Only 204 turned up to the New Windmill Ground last night on a damp evening to see Leamington play Brackley Town in the Red Insure (league) Cup. However, those who did come certainly had an entertaining night.
Talking before the game about Tony Breeden who debuted for Kiddy on Saturday keeping a clean sheet and making one first rate save. Our new keeper looks the business though: I wouldn't blame him for Brackley's two goals.
Billy Turley started in goal for Brackley. He has had a chequered career:
Turley I remember him as keeper at Rushden & Diamonds: he had a very loud voice then.
First he got in trouble for allegedly taking anabolic steroids and then he got a six month ban for recreational use of cocaine. As someone said last night, it was a good job he wasn't a winger as he would be accused of following the white lines. He then resurrected his career at Oxford United.
Just as in the recent league game, there was little to choose between the two sides in the first half, although we were playing the ball on the ground more than we have been and making greater use of the wings.
The main incident in the first half came when the ref blew up and went over to the Brackley bench. I thought for a moment that someone had said something to the lino, but then the ref showed himself the red card. It was a calf muscle strain and a new lino was produced to applause after some delay.
Unfortunately the young lino who took over as ref wouldn't take a decision on anything (apart from anything else it appeared that the ref had forgotten to give him his cards). This cost us dear in extra time when we were denied what I thought were two clear penalty appeals.
Brakes looked sharper when Blyth came on and although Brackley took the lead, we replied with Blyth scoring from a Husbands corner. Brackley then went ahead again with an unstoppable header and I must admit that I was heading towards the corner flag when the appropriately named Charlton scored with a header to make it 2-2.
We had been getting better as the game went on but I think that our best period of play was in the first half of extra time when we really rattled the post twice, the first time from Blyth and then from Morley.
It went to penalties and unfortunately Blyth put his shot over to allow Brackley win 5-3. These things happen in penalty shoot outs. In any case I am not too bothered about exiting the cup. What is encouraging is that we look in good shape for Saturday's more important game against Cambridge City.
If the queues at Heathrow immigration aren't too long when I fly back from Copenhagen I should make it.