Milligan is the man for Brig! Chairman gives his backing to boss Jamie

Bamber Bridge chairman Brian Ginty is convinced that manager Jamie Milligan is the right man to lead the club forward.

Friday, 19th March 2021, 8:00 am

The former Everton, Blackpool and Fleetwood Town midfielder has been in charge of first-team affairs at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium for around 16 months.

It has certainly been a testing time for the Brig boss in what has been an unique situation.

When he took over the reins from Joey Collins in December 2019, he would not have envisaged that more than a year later he would still be waiting to see a season through to its conclusion.

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Brig boss Jamie Milligan (photo: Ruth Hornby)

The Covid-19 pandemic and its devastating consequences have wreaked havoc with the past two seasons in the NPL Premier Division, causing them both to be declared null and void.

For Milligan, his first venture into management after a stellar playing career in non-league has not been anything like he would have imagined.

Installed very much in a firefighting capacity initially, Milligan and his assistant – ex-Blackpool and Sheffield Wednesday defender John Hills – helped steer the club away from the bottom reaches in their first few months at Irongate before the campaign was prematurely halted.

This season has been a tale of woe as the club was hit with a Covid-19 forced all of its squad to self-isolate for two weeks.

After that a number of injuries exacerbated matters and the team found itself in the bottom three before the season was cancelled with just a handful of games played.

Ginty revealed that he had no reservations that Brig would have come good but admits it has been difficult for the management team with the playing budget reduced and that is unlikely to improve in the immediate future.

“We set a budget at the start of the season which was greatly reduced from the previous season because of what we knew in light of the pandemic,” said Ginty, who will hope that the club will be able to operate at full capacity in terms of match day income and the opening of its popular clubhouse next season.

“Maybe that was reflected in the position that we found ourselves in – in the bottom three. But in all the games that I saw, I felt we looked better than what the league table position reflected.

“I had every confidence that things would have started to come good. But Jamie has done a great job because he accepted the financial position that the club was in.

“We will assess things in terms of next season once we know what is happening.

“But I don’t think it will be too long before he will come knocking on my door to ask me what his budget is for next year. We will have to take an assessment as to what we think might happen and try to move forward.”

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