Bromsgrove made the short trip to Leamington town in what was the first ever competitive match between the two teams.
With the recent departure of Prince Henry, and an injury to Kieran Berry, Tristan Dunkley was recalled to the starting 11. Ayo Lekuti also made the squad for the first time since his return to the club.
Lining up against us was former Rousler, Josh Quaynor who was playing in a familiar left back position, whilst another former player, Connor Taylor made the Leamington bench.
Conditions were perfect for football, and with an outstanding away record going into the game, Bromsgrove were hoping to continue their excellent away form.
Wearing our away colours of Green and white stripes, Bromsgrove started the game well. Lots of quick passing between Dunkley and the supporting midfielders let to a couple of half chances which did not threaten the away goalkeeper.
In the 7th minute Leamington had their first chance when Kelly-Evans curled an effort narrowly past the far post. Minutes later Bromsgrove had an effort of their own when Billy Shaw drilled the ball across the face of goal but no one was on hand to tap the ball home at the back post.
After a lively start from Sporting it was Leamington who took the lead when a long ball into Barnett was flicked on to his strike partner Landers who placed when through 1-1 smashed the ball past Taylor at the near post giving him no chance.
Bromsgrove continued to press and the always dangerous Conor Tee had the keeper at full stretch when his whipped free kick narrowly missed the top corner of the net.
Both teams were forced into first half changes when Junior English needed to be replaced for Leamington and Bromsgrove also had to replace Jack Newell, both due to injury. Bromsgrove substituted Lekuti on at left back and moved Shaw into a more central position.
On the stroke of half time Tee skipped past a couple of players before unleashing a curing left footed shot which was parried away by the Leamington goalkeeper for a corner.
Half time: Leamington 1 – 0 Bromsgrove Sporting
Again, Bromsgrove started the half lively and retained the ball well and we playing some good football in the Leamington half. This resulted in 3 corners in quick succession, but Leamington stood firm and defended well.
In the ’55 minute the game changed when Dunkley received a red card. The Leamington goalkeeper kicked the ball out of his hands and into Dunkley’s back. The referee decided that this warranted a yellow card despite Dunkley being outside the 18-yard box and making no movement towards the ball. A bemused Dunkley was then shown a second yellow card for dissent. This was a harsh decision on Bromsgrove and was certainly against the run of play.
Bromsgrove continued to move the ball around well with the lively Gustavo Sanches entering the field in the 78th minute, however Bromsgrove were reduced to 9 men when player-manager Michael McGrath bought down Barnett who was in on goal.
Leamington could and probably should have had a red card of their own when a fantastic outside of the boot caring pass from Tee released Sanches who was through on goal, before being chopped down by Quaynor. The resulting free kick was close again by Tee but hit the side netting.
5 minutes of time was added on for stoppage time, and in the first minute Leamington doubled their lead when the impressive Daniel Meredith crossed to Tyrone Barnett who poked home from close range.
A first away defeat of the season from Bromsgrove who will be disappointed not to come away from the game with anything.
Full time: Leamington 2 – 0 Bromsgrove Sporting
Sporting line-up: Ollie Taylor, Aksum White, Billy Shaw (Gus Sanches ’78), Jack Newell (Ayo Lekuti ’38), Aaron Roberts, Mike McGrath, Callum King-Harmes (Miro Pais ’67), Keanu Cooper, Tristan Dunkley, Conor Tee, Luke Rowe (Capt). Unused substitutes: Kane Auld, David Solademi.
Referee: Mr N Templey
Sporting Player of the Match: Aaron Roberts
Report by Iain Queen