Colby Bishop in action in the narrow FA Trophy defeat to Hartlepool.
Colby Bishop in action in the narrow FA Trophy defeat to Hartlepool.

Leamington boss Paul Holleran is full of festive cheer going into the Christmas period after admitting his side are ahead of schedule, writes Paul Okey.

Brakes go into a busy spell on

27 points and sit 12th in the National League North, nine points clear of the drop zone.

The visit of FC United tomorrow gives them a chance to put further distance between themselves and a relegation rival and Holleran believes Brakes can take heart from a positive start to the month.

“The targets we have set ourselves, we’re slightly ahead but there are a lot of points to play for in the next few weeks,” said Holleran.

“We were well aware how tough December was going to be with York, Chorley and Hartlepool, full-time teams, but we’ve been well in the games and got two draws and suffered a 1-0.

“We competed well against good, full-time teams, are in good form and have a nice consistency about us.”

The FC United clash kicks off a run of four games in 11 days for Brakes and Holleran knows a win tomorrow will strike an important psychological blow.

“We’ve got two home games, FC and Brackley and Brackley and Telford away and it’s a hard Christmas, a tough Christmas but one we’re looking forward to.

“It’s what we play the game for.

“FC United are of a similar ilk to us and they have improved recently with a new manager brought in, there’s a bit more about them.

“But’s it’s an opportunity for us to get to 30 points and that is a great incentive.”

Jamie Hood, who was on the bench for the FA Trophy defeat to Hartlepool, remains the only injury concern, with a dead leg taking time to clear up.