Express & Star

Brackley v Kidderminster preview: Hungry Harriers determined to seize shot at glory

‘The mood is good’ revealed Kidderminster Harriers assistant manager Jimmy O’Connor ahead of their trip to Brackley Town in the National League North play-off final tomorrow.


The Harriers have earned a one-off shot at promotion following eight wins in a row, storming to their first ever play-off final with a 4-1 win against King’s Lynn last weekend.

After a tough start to the season, Russell Penn’s side came alive after Christmas, clinching a play-off spot on the final day of the season in dramatic style, and O’Connor has praised his Harriers for how they’ve overcome their challenges to reach where they are.

“We’ve had to work damn hard to get to this position and everyone’s determined now to try and take it,” said the assistant manager.

“The mood’s good, coming through adversity earlier in the season where it was very difficult at times.

“Individually, collectively as a whole on the back of last year, I think the expectation had gone up a notch due to the cup run and so fourth. It can be a good thing and we can use that to our advantage.

“Nothing’s been handed to us on a plate this year, it’s been the complete opposite.”

It all comes down to this weekend as the Harriers visit Brackley hoping to seal a spot in the highest level and pinnacle of non-league football.

O’Connor revealed how much everyone at the club wants to go up, confident in the side’s capabilities when they bring their a-game.

“Promotion is something we are desperate to get, it’s about focusing on the next game like we have for the last eight.

“It’s another football match.

“As we always say, when we perform and hit our levels and our heights, I believe we can beat any team in this division.

“We’ve been saying that after Christmas and Sunday is no different. You deserve what you get. It’s not like we’ve been working any harder after Christmas.

“It’s not just about working hard, it’s about working smart. Learning about the group, getting the right people in and right people out.

“We’ve earned the right to play in a play-off final. Brackley will be saying exactly the same and everything’s geared towards Sunday now, nothing more and nothing less.”

Kidderminster have been allocated 700 tickets for tomorrow’s final at St James Park. O’Connor commended the fans, grateful for their continued support and hoping it can help his side to glory this weekend.

He said: “Over the last three years, it’s not just this season, you look at the support we’ve had, we’ve built up quite a reputation around the country for it really.

“I think the support is second to none, to take over 800 fans to King’s Lynn on a Sunday morning and over 1000 fans to Alfreton on a Tuesday night speaks for itself.

“They’ve been an absolute credit to the football club and the support means the world to me, Russ, the players and everyone.

“We hope to get the full backing on Sunday again and hopefully it can get us over the line.”