Brig can have major say on destiny of title

Chris Marlow

Chris Marlow

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Bamber Bridge boss Neil Reynolds is hoping he can do derby rivals Lancaster City a favour in the final few months of the NPL First Division North season.

The Dolly Blues are on course to win the title as they currently lead the way at the top of the table.

However, a fly in the ointment for City could be Farsley Celtic, who are second in the table three points behind but with two games in hand.

Intriguingly, Brig face Celtic twice in consecutive weekends later this month and Reynolds admits he would like nothing more than to get the better of the Yorkshiremen.

Not only would it help out neighbours Lancaster, it could also give his own team’s play-off ambitions impetus.

“I would love to do Lancaster City a favour,” said Reynolds.

“I like Phil Brown (Lancaster’s manager) – I like the way he goes about his business.

“I am jealous and envious of them being where they are, but if we can help them out as well as helping ourselves out, we will do that.”

Despite currently being 11 points outside of the play-offs, Reynolds has not given up hope of his team forcing their way into the top five.

They face a challenging final 10 games as only two of their opponents are below them in the table.

On Saturday they face fifth-placed Ossett Town at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium – a match which has been re-arranged from last weekend after it was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

Reynolds said: “No disrespect to Ossett, who have done great this season, but if we want to be where we want to be this season, then we have to beat them.

“If we have ambitions of getting in the play-offs then we have to win this weekend.”

Reynolds reckons his players will be like ‘caged animals’ come kick-off this weekend as they have not kicked a competitive ball in anger for three weeks.

The Ossett postponement added to the scheduled away games against Colne and 
Clitheroe, which also fell foul of the weather .

Reynolds himself is eager to get back in the dugout. He has not taken charge of the team since February 11 – the day before he flew out to Las Vegas on holiday.

“We can’t wait to get going now. We have trained like it has been pre-season and the lads have been fantastic.

“We’ve not given them a night off, so they’ve trained Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday.

“We have done a lot of 
fitness work.

“The players will be like caged animals on Saturday – hopefully they will take it out on Ossett.”

Squad wise, the enforced break means Brig are at full strength, with Chris Marlow set to feature after coming through a reserve game this week.

Striker Chris McDonagh though has left the club.