Brig face anxious wait on midfielder’s fitness

Brad Carsley is unable to apply the finishing touch against Ashton Athletic on Saturday
Brad Carsley is unable to apply the finishing touch against Ashton Athletic on Saturday

Bamber Bridge boss Neil Reynolds may be forced to delve into the loan market after Jamie Milligan broke down in training last week.

The veteran former Everton, Blackpool and Fleetwood Town midfielder missed last weekend’s FA Cup defeat to Ashton Athletic after suffering a mysterious knee injury.

The 36-year-old is awaiting a scan and Reynolds fears Milligan may have suffered a cartilage tear and if that’s the case, he will require an operation, which could keep him sidelined for up to six weeks.

“It was a strange one,” said Reynolds. “Jamie works as a coach and he sort of tweaked it last Tuesday.

“He trained with us on Thursday and he was fine for 45 minutes, but then just totally innocuously went down.

“He needs a scan, so we will be sending him for one. It may mean he will require a surgical procedure and so we will be looking at four to six weeks out.”

Reynolds is hopeful of bringing in a replacement on a short-term deal and has been speaking to a Football League club about borrowing one of their young midfielders.

Meanwhile, Reynolds believes his team’s FA Cup exit on Saturday will spur his side on for this evening’s NPL First Division North clash against Kendal Town at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium. Brig were surprisingly beaten 2-1 by the North West Counties outfit, although they will wonder how bearing in mind the number of chances they created.

“I am really disappointed to go out of the FA Cup,” he said. “All credit to Ashton, but they had two chances and converted those two chances, we must have had 22 chances and only scored one.

“I was hurting on Saturday night – I still am now and I am hoping the players will be hurting because if they are not, then we will have a problem this season.”

Reynolds will be without Adam Dodd, who is suspendedfollowing his red card against Colwyn Bay, while Matt Mahoney also faces a ban after getting sent off on Saturday.