FA Cup showdowns

Long Buckby manager Glenn Botterill
Long Buckby manager Glenn Botterill

UCL leaders Long Buckby will take a 100 per cent record into Saturday’s FA Cup second qualifying round tie at Bridgnorth, writes Mike Tebbitt.

But Daventry Town will be without three of their new signings when taking on Leamington at Communications Park.

A 1-0 win over UCL title favourites King’s Lynn in north Norfolk at the weekend means the Bucks will have every chance of lowering the colours of Midland Alliance League strugglers Bridgnorth in the Black Country.

Glenn Botterill’s men have won all eight Premier Division games so far this season as well as chalking easy victories over both Rothwell Corinthians and Thrapston Town in the FA Cup.

Meanwhile Daventry Town face a much more formidable task in front of an expected crowd of 500 plus, many of whom will make the short journey from Leamington to support a Brakes’ side hovering around the SL Premier Division play-off places.

Former Sutton Coldfield Town full-back Craig Milligan will be available to the Town but ex-Romulus central defender Luke Edwards is cup-tied along with the returning Josh O’Grady and Hinckley United loan-signing Tom Burn.

On the credit side, talented midfield player Claudiu Hoban is fit again and goalkeeper Joe Mellings should be back in action sometime this week after an ankle injury.

The cup tie will give ex-Leamington captain Aaron Parkinson and club record scorer Mark Bellingham a chance to play against their old club while former Daventry hot shot Tom Berwick could line-up for the Brakes.

Berwick scored more than 80 goals in his last two seasons at Daventry but has played less than an hour’s football after being confined to the substitutes’ bench during Leamington’s last four matches.

David Kolodynski is the latest goalscoring sensation at the New Windmill and it cannot be long odds against Berwick returning for a third spell at Communications Park at some time in the future.

First things first though and the Town would do well to force a lucrative midweek replay at Leamington while the Bucks will surely fancy their chances of beating Bridgnorth at the first attempt.

Leamington manager Paul Holleran is taking nothing for granted after the Brakes’ responded to a shock league defeat by Bedford Town to record a convincing 5-0 FA Cup success over Boldmere St.Michaels.

“At the end of the day Daventry are a team from a lower league and we should progress,” said Holleran.

“Even so the tie carries certain dangers with them having players of the calibre of Mark Bellingham, Aaron Parkinson, Howard Forinton and Callum Burgess.”