Bamber Bridge boss Neil Reynolds ready for PNE and England
Bamber Bridge manager Neil Reynolds is hoping Preston North End's visit to the Sir Tom Finney Stadium forms part of a feast of football.
The pre-season friendly has been given a 12.30pm start to allow supporters to watch England’s clash with Sweden at 3pm.
A bumper crowd will boost Brig’s coffers ahead of the new campaign, with attention then turning to the big screen to see if England can make the World Cup semi-finals.
Reynolds said: “I can’t wait for Saturday and hopefully we can all have a great time.
“Our game against PNE is always a huge occasion for this club and I want to say a huge thank you to North End for agreeing to come down again and their continued support.
“The 12.30pm kick-off is a commonsense approach from a safety perspective.
“Had it stayed at 1pm, we’d be looking at a 2.45pm finish and 2,000 people trying to get out of the ground or into the clubhouse to watch England.
“As it is, the fans have got 45 minutes to get home or to where they want to watch the World Cup.
“We are showing the game in the clubhouse and people are very welcome to stay.
“Hopefully our game will be entertaining and then we can watch England reach the semi-final.”
Like Preston, this is the first pre-season friendly of the summer for Brig.
Said Reynolds: “It’s nice to be back, it seemed to be a long break after the euphoria of winning the play-offs.
“We’ve kept all of the squad together and added players to it, which is good.
“We have had three sessions since coming back which isn’t a great deal so we’ll be miles behind Preston in terms of the fitness.
“But we’ll be ready to play and to give a good account of ourselves.
“It will be good to see Alex Neil down here again.
“When we played Preston last year, Alex had just got the job and this was his first game.
“We had a great chat for 20 minutes beforehand, just some football talk, a bit about his philosophy and about how we were approaching things.
“He seemed impressed with what we were trying to do at Bamber Bridge, which was a big boost.”
Admission is £8 for adults, £5 for concessions, £1 for children aged 12-16 years, while Under-11s get in for free if accompanied by an adult.