Brakes will be revved up to gain revenge

Banbury United manager Mike Ford is expecting a typical derby atmosphere
Banbury United manager Mike Ford is expecting a typical derby atmosphere

No matter the outcome of Saturday’s game, Monday’s Evo-Stik Southern League derby at Leamington should be another crunch clash.

Banbury United’s victory over the Brakes at the start of the year saw parting shots from both camps. That victory heralded the demise of Leamington’s premier division title ambitions so they will be keen to exact revenge on Monday.

Leamington may have secured second spot by then but it’s a derby between two top teams and hopefully my players can put on another top performance at their place

Puritans boss Mike Ford

Puritans boss Mike Ford said: “It’s hard to keep winning games every week when you’re in the top two or three, so credit to Leamington for doing that.

“Leamington may have secured second spot by Monday but it’s a derby and hopefully my players can put on another top performance at their place.

“We’ll definitely have something to play for on Monday, irrespective of Saturday’s result against Hitchin, and they will be surprised by the progress we’ve made since they beat us.

“No-one expected us to come with the run we’ve been on since Christmas. Apart from Chippenham and Leamington, we’ve probably picked up more than any other team.

“Leamington play on Friday so they will have more time to recover and means I will have to look at my squad after Saturday’s game to see if I need to freshen it up.”