Holleran sees red after Fry’s broken jaw

James Fry has been ruled out for the season after suffering a fractured jaw at Chesham.
James Fry has been ruled out for the season after suffering a fractured jaw at Chesham.

Leamington manager Paul Holleran was reluctant to spend too much time discussing the events which saw him sent to the stands at Chesham on Tuesday evening.

However, he pointed to the fractured jaw sustained by midfielder James Fry as some justification for his actions.

Fry has been ruled out for the season after picking up the injury in the second half of the 3-0 defeat and Holleran said referee Tim Donnellan’s performance meant a serious injury was always just around the corner.

“It was frustrating for everyone,” said Holleran after witnessing his side’s first defeat in ten Southern Premier Division games.

“We’ve had this guy at Biggleswade and Cambridge away and you get it in any walk of life.

“You have people at levels when they shouldn’t be at that level.

“And when that happens in football you get players with broken jaws - I’ll leave it at that.”

Holleran refused to blame the referee, or indeed the absence of defensive rock Jamie Hood, for the defeat, however.

Hood is expected to be out for at least three weeks following a knee injury sustained at Dorchester on Saturday, but Holleran said it was a lack of resilience throughout the team which contributed to the loss.

“It wasn’t just the fact that someone was missing out of the back four,” he said.

“We didn’t deal with what Chesham did.

“We needed to show the resilience we showed at Hungerford and Slough in the first 20 minutes and we didn’t, which is unusual for us.

“We also fell into the trap of thinking that just because something was working for us we’d keep on playing the same system and the shape of the team was slightly wrong.

“We responded well (after going 2-0 down) without affecting the scoreboard and we actually played a lot better than on Saturday against Dorchester - it could have been 4-3.”

With results going for them, Leamington find themselves in third place going into a crucial Easter weekend which sees them entertain Chippenham tomorrow before making the short trip to the DCS Stadium to face Stratford on Monday.

However, the loss of Hood and Fry and the threat of further injuries have forced Holleran to bolster his squad.

Eighteen-year-old striker Khaellem Bailey-Nicholls and goalkeeper Leighton Smith, also 18, have linked up with the club on work experience forms after being informed they would be released by Birmingham City.

Striker Daniel Dubidat has also moved to the Phillips 66 Community Stadium from Bedworth United.

The 26-year-old was the Greenbacks’ top scorer with 29 goals last season as they won promotion to the Premier Division, joining Redditch United last summer where he scored eight times before returning to Bedworth.

The striker sits out tomorrow’s clash due to suspension, but will be available for the trip to Stratford and Holleran said the addition of the three players, plus the returns of Joe Halsall and the fit-again Joe Magunda will be crucial in a congested run-in.

“The players at this level are treated like dogs,” said Holleran who is still in the market for one further addition.

“How are they expected to perform when they are chasing to one end of the country on a Saturday and another on a Tuesday?

“You don’t get to take your tracksuit off.

“You only have to look at the last two games to see how things can go wrong very quickly with Jamie Hood carried off and James Fry in hospital.

“These additions will enable us to cover as many bases as we can.”