Bamber Bridge boss Joey Collins happy to be back at home

Kieran Charnock is a slight injury doubt (photo: Ruth Hornby)
Kieran Charnock is a slight injury doubt (photo: Ruth Hornby)

Bamber Bridge will have the sweet smell of home to look forward to this weekend when they host Witton Albion at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium.

By a quirk in the fixture list, plus some inclement weather to boot, Brig have only played in front of their own supporters three times out of 12 competitive games this season.

In those three games at Irongate, Brig have a 66.6% win ratio – a contrast to their fortunes on the road where they have only won once – and that was against North West Counties League outfit Longridge Town in the LFA Challenge Trophy.

Otherwise it has been a tale of woe on their travels – picking up just one point from seven games in the league and losing 3-0 at Trafford in the FA Cup.

This week saw Brig perform well at FC United of Manchester on Saturday but still lose 1-0.

And an abject opening half-hour was largely responsible for their 4-1 mauling at the hands of Gainsborough Trinity in midweek.

Brig now have four of their next five games at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium and boss Joey Collins admitted the next couple of weeks are crucial to his team’s hopes this season.

“It does seem a long while ago since we played at home,” said Collins.

“It‘s quite tough being on the road – some games we are travelling three hours to matches when the lads have been working.

“I think in all competitions we have only had three at home.

“When we have played at we have done okay – we seem to get the ball down and play a bit more.

“We’ve got to make the most of these next few games and get some points on the board.”

Albion are in mid-table in the league and were on the receiving end of a 3-1 loss to Lancaster City in midweek.

“They have had some good results to be fair,” said Collins. “They will be like any other team in this division – strong and organised.

“We want to make the Sir Tom Finney Stadium a difficult place for teams to come.”

On the injury front, Collins will run the rule over Joe Booth, who has missed the past couple of weeks with injury.

Centre-half Kieran Charnock took a knock at Gainsborough but should be fit.