Trophy clash at Macclesfield is one to savour for Bamber Bridge's stars

Boss Jamie Milligan has urged his Bamber Bridge team to embrace the occasion when they face Macclesfield at Moss Road in the third qualifying round of the FA Trophy this weekend.
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On paper, Brig will go into the game as the favourites to progress, but in reality they perhaps start the match as the underdogs.

The Silkmen may play one level below Brig – but they are a phoenix club of the former Football League outfit Macclesfield Town.

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They spent more than 15 years in the Football League before suffering financial problems and were eventually wound up in 2020.

Fin Sinclair-Smith will relish facing Macclesfield this weekend (photo: Ruth Hornby)Fin Sinclair-Smith will relish facing Macclesfield this weekend (photo: Ruth Hornby)
Fin Sinclair-Smith will relish facing Macclesfield this weekend (photo: Ruth Hornby)

However, the new current club was born and it is looking to put the town back on the football map.

Last season they won the North West Counties Premier Division title and currently lead the way this season in the NPL West Division.

The fans continue to turn out in their droves with the team regularly playing in front of three to four thousand spectators at home.

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By contrast, Brig have a loyal home support of around a few hundred in each game but Milligan believes many of his young stars will relish the prospect of playing in front of such a large audience.

"It’s going to be a tough game,” admitted Milligan. “They are a league below us but looking at their squad, they are probably geared up for our league and the league higher.

"They have got the financial backing to bring these players in but I would back our lads above any team in our division and below.

"It’s a great game for my boys to play in – there should be a few thousand on.

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"That’s what you want – a massive crowd, playing against a good team and we’re on form too.

"I want my boys to play on these big occasions. We are a youngish squad. Okay we’ve got people like Nathan Pond and David Perkins who are getting on and have experienced this kind of stage many times in the past.

"But the rest of the lads are young – some are 19,20-years-old – we’ve probably got the youngest squad in our division.”

Clitheroe have the chance to get the disappointment of losing in the FA Cup, 2-0 via a replay, to Bury AFC out of their system when they travel to Marske United in the FA Trophy.

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