Class of ’98 inspire the Seasiders

Jamie Milligan in action against current boss Paul Ince back in 2000
Jamie Milligan in action against current boss Paul Ince back in 2000
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While David Beckham and Gary Neville recently starred in a film which celebrated their FA Youth Cup success, Jamie Milligan is much more modest.

The Blackpool Youth Team coach was part of Everton’s 1998 winning side.

He’ll be on the touchline tonight as Blackpool’s latest batch of youth stars face giants Liverpool at Bloomfield Road in the FA Youth Cup (kick-off 7pm).

Now 33, and still playing in the Conference for Southport, Milligan aims to pass his experiences on to Blackpool’s class of 2013.

“I’ve spoken to a few of the lads about it and the time we won it,” he said. “I always tell them that it’s the best time of your life, so they need to enjoy it.

“When you are that age it’s a fantastic time. The main thing is that they go out there and give it a really good go.

“There’s no pressure on them as no-one expects them to win.

“They need to get stuck into Liverpool and see where it takes us. It’s a one-off game.”

Milligan played alongside Richard Dunne, Michael Ball and Leon Osman in 1998, when Everton beat Blackburn 5-3 over two legs.

And it’s something he remembers well. The Lytham- based midfielder said: “I won man of the match in the first leg and had to do my first ever TV interview. I crumbled, but it was all a great experience and one I’ll never forget.”

Milligan went on to play four times in the Premier League for the Toffees before joining Blackpool in 2001.