Bamber Bridge must hit peak performance more often says Matt Lawlor

Matt Lawlor (photo: Ruth Hornby)
Matt Lawlor (photo: Ruth Hornby)

The peaks that Bamber Bridge have reached this season still gives assistant manager Matt Lawlor hope for the future.

The Brig centre-half, who is also club captain, is concerned by the team’s current position in the NPL Premier Division. They are just two points above the drop zone, having won just three of their opening 16 league games.

The campaign arguably hit an all-time low last weekend when Brig squandered a 2-0 advantage at half-time against Stalybridge Celtic to lose 3-2.

Lawlor insisted the first-half performance against Celtic was outstanding – a complete contrast to what was served up in the second half.

The skipper admits his team must now start to put points on the board if they are not to get dragged into a relegation dogfight at the bottom of the NPL Premier Division.

And he is urged the players to maintain their level consistently throughout games.

“The peaks we have managed to reach in games makes me think that we can move away from the bottom,” said Lawlor.

“Saturday was absolutely gutting because we played so well in the first half.

“We should have been three or four up – we had some golden opportunities to make it 4-0 but we didn’t do that.

“Then we came out for the second half and everything we were in the first half, we weren’t in the second half.

“We could not keep hold of the ball – our team shape dropped and we started sitting back and inviting pressure. It was really disappointing and really frustrating.”

As an illustration of Brig’s inconsistency this season, they have found themselves in winning positions on several occasions but have failed to go on and win.

“There’s a stat which says that if we had have won the games that we had been leading in this season, we would be fourth in the table, which is quite remarkable stat,” Lawlor added.

This weekend, Brig take on Hyde United on their 3G pitch – something Lawlor believes will play into his men’s hands.

“Hyde’s a really good club,” he said. “They play on an artificial pitch and that should suit us.

“We have done really well there in the past although that’s nothing to go off.

“They got a draw against second-in-the-league Lancaster last weekend so should be confident.”