The first coach trip of the season took Brig to Nottinghamshire and another visit to ambitious Basford United. Unfortunately for the visiting Lancastrians, it’s another visit, another defeat. Three trips to Greenwich Avenue have yielded zero points. In fact in five games against the Nottingham club Bamber Bridge have yet to take a single point.
The game started with Bamber Bridge making one major change. American goalkeeper William Marment replacing Danny Roccia in goal. The debutant Brig keeper was called into action in the 1st minute, diving to save a shot from inside the penalty area. The resulting corner found it’s way into the Brig net but the goal was chalked off for a foul. However the warning signals had already been sounded.
At the other end Matt Lawlor found space in the penalty area but his powerful header from a Brig corner just cleared the bar. From the goal kick, the home side where awarded a free kick, George Thomason adjudged to have committed the foul 25 yards from goal. The resultant set piece was lifted over the wall by Matt Thornhill and found the top corner of the net with Brig’s debutant keeper at full stretch getting a hand to it, but unable to keep it out.
Just two minutes later and worse was to follow, Brig lost possession in their own half, a through pass saw Basford Striker Rev James chase down the loose ball, as Brig keeper Mamment raced from his line to clear, he struck the ball against the advancing United striker and watched in anguish as the ball ballooned back over his head and dropped into the empty net, A disastrous start and Brig were two behind with a mountain to climb.
The Lancashire vistors responded and Isaac Sinclair saw a shot from distance saved, resulting in a corner. This was headed clear but returned and headed over the bar for a second corner kick. Brig were playing some good football and pushing their hosts back. A free kick awarded for a foul on George Thomason on th edge of the area was taken by Mark Yeates. His shot beat the wall but lacked power and the home keeper Kieran Preston Saved comfortably. Further Brig pressure saw another free kick awarded in a more central position some 25 yards from goal. Yeates again stepped up, but as before his shot lacked venim and the keeper was able to make a straight forward save.
The home side were now content to play on the break and forced two quick corners, both headed clear. Callum King-Harmes was next to try his luck for Bamber Bridge with a shot from distance but again Preston in the Basford goal wasn’t really troubled. As Brig continued to press their hosts back Mark Yeats watched on as his lob from wide on the right dropped just a foot wide of the post. The best chance of the half however fell to Isaac Sinclair, the home keeper misjudged a pass across the area, Sinclair ran on to the ball with the keeper stranded but delayed just enough for the home defender to get back and force a challenge and clear the ball.
The last chance of the half saw Danny Forbes strike an effort over the bar after his strength and determination had created the shooting opportunity from the edge of the box.
The Second half began with Brig attacking towards the mast ranks of the 4 “Briggers” behind the goal. The visitors won another free kick just outside the penalty area and George Thomason this time stepped up but the ball hit the Basford wall and was cleared. Bamber Bridge, just as they were in the first half were passing the ball around well but without really threatening the home goal. Mark Yeats dribbled into the box from the left before squaring the ball to Danny Forbes, Off balance and leaning back Danny’s effort sailed over the bar.
On 65 minutes Jamal Crawford was replaced by Rowan Roache and this paid dividends almost immediately. A Roache cross from the left was met with a fine Danny Forbes header in to the bottom corner. Brig were deservedly back in the game and continued to force their hosts to back peddle. Another Thomason Free kick was stopped by the defensive wall but despite constant pressure the home goal wasn’t further threatened. Two late substitutions saw Man of the match Forbes replaced by Oscar Radcliffe and DJ De LaCruz came on in the closing minutes for Callum King- Harmes.
A Callum Spooner effort that passed two yards wide of the post was the nearest Brig came to grabbing an equaliser as the referee brought proceedings to an end much to the delight of the home crowd. Another good display from Bamber Bridge, but just at the moment, any mistakes are being punished at the back and the lack of cutting edge at the sharp end of the pitch is costing The Lancashire side.
So it’s three defeats on the bounce for The Briggers, but as this season progresses (for how long nobody knows), games are coming thick and fast. A visit to Atherton Collieries beckons this Tuesday evening and a chance to get the show back on the road.
Full Time: Basford United – 2 Bamber Bridge – 1
Att; Not announced
Bamber Bridge: Marment, Spooner, Wilson, Forbes, Lawlor (Capt.), Churchman, King-Harmes, Thomason, Sinclair, Yeats, Crawford
Subs: Radcliffe, De LaCruz, Roache, Roccia