After an against-the-odds triumph over Burton Albion, Leamington FC have made it to the final of the Birmingham Senior Cup, where they will play one of Alvechurch or Stourbridge, with the tie likely to be held at one of Birmingham’s Premier League stadiums.
Although many football fans will not have heard of the Birmingham Senior Cup, reaching the latter stages of the competition, let alone the final, is no mean feat for a team of Leamington’s stature. Within the Senior Cup’s catchment area are many clubs in the higher echelons of the league pyramid, from Coventry City to Wolves, West Brom, and Aston Villa.
This run has been combined with a relatively successful league campaign
Leamington themselves had beaten West Brom on their way to the semi-final, where they played Burton Albion, a team three leagues above the Brakes, in League One. Most larger clubs play an Academy XI in the Senior Cup, but this was not the case for Burton, who gave minutes to up to six first-team players, from captain Frazer Blake-Tracey to championship-stalwart Harry Chapman, making Leamington’s achievement, in beating them 1-0, all the more impressive.
The Brakes were solid in defence, with Jake Weaver pulling off a number of fine saves from the dangerous Louis Moult, but Leamington always remained a threat up front, with summer signing Kelsey Mooney particularly dangerous. Mooney was close to breaking the dead-lock on a number of occasions, but it was eventually 36-year-old winger Callum Gittings who stooped low to head home and send Leamington to the final.
This run has been combined with a relatively successful league campaign, where Leamington sit 14th after 30 games. A play-off push may be just out of reach, but a season of solid consolidation after the struggles of Covid-19 was to be expected. If they could combine this with a Senior Cup victory, then it would certainly be a successful season for the Brakes.