South Shields performance was as good as it gets, says Bamber Bridge boss Jamie Milligan

Bamber Bridge’s performance in the opening 45 minutes of their match against South Shields is as good as anything the club has ever produced.

Friday, 8th October 2021, 8:00 am

That is the view of boss Jamie Milligan who watched his men sweep aside the NPL Premier Division title favourites in a scintillating first-half display.

Goals from Ewan Bange, Finlay Sinclair-Smith and Sheldon Green saw Brig comprehensively defeat the shell-shocked full-time outfit. The result saw

Brig cement their place in the play-offs and Milligan admitted a performance like that will have a huge effect on his men’s confidence.

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Finlay Sinclair-Smith wheels away after scoring against South Shields (photo: Ruth Hornby)

“To be honest, I think that could be the best first-half performance ever seen at Bamber Bridge,” said Milligan.

“From minute one, the lads’ attitude and work-rate was unbelievable and we just steamrollered them. They just could not handle it.

“They are full-time and don’t get me wrong, they are a very good team and will probably go up this season.

“I said to the lads before the game that it was going to be a good indication of where we are at.

“But we went man for man all over the park and we got the press absolutely spot on.” To further bolster his squad, Milligan has swooped for former Fleetwood Town team-mate Nathan Pond.

The 36-year-old centre-half, who hails from Preston, is a legend of the Cod Army after spending 15 years at Highbury.

Pond joined in 2003 and helped the club rise from the North West Counties League to League One before leaving in 2018 for Salford City.

“I have been big mates with Pondy for years,” added Milligan. “I know what I am going to get from him.

“We do need that little bit of experience which Pondy will provide. He’s going to be a massive signing for us both on and off the pitch.

“You look at him, he’s 36, but he’s still really fit and hungry and is going to have a big part to play.”

Pond is unavailable for this weekend’s trip to second-bottom Grantham Town due to suspension.

“It’s going to be a tough one this weekend – going from playing a team at the top to a team who are down at the bottom,” said Milligan.

“It’s mine and my assistant John Hills’ job to make sure that the lads are prepared to show the same attitude, the same work-rate against Grantham as they did against South Shields. ”

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