Former Fleetwood favourite Jamie Milligan is looking forward to a bright future after teaming up with old pals Alan Wright and John Hills at Southport.
The midfielder has agreed to join the Conference part-timers – managed by his old Fleetwood team-mates Wright and Hills, who also played alongside Milligan at Blackpool over decade ago.
Milligan is set to put pen to paper in the coming days and he told The Gazette: “I feel I’ve got plenty left in me. This is a chance to carry on playing.
“It’s great to be joining up with Alan Wright again and with Hillsy too, who has gone there as his assistant.
“They are both good mates and I’m looking forward to playing for them.”
The 33-year-old left Highbury earlier this summer, following an eight-year spell with Town which saw the club achieve promotion from the Northern Premier League all the way to the Football League.
Boss Graham Alexander decided against giving the midfielder a new contract but Milligan remains grateful to Fleetwood for his time at the club. “I just want to thank the chairman Andy Pilley,” said Milligan. “He’s been fantastic to me and to the club.
“I’ve seen what they have been doing over the summer in the transfer market and they’ve made some real quality signings. I hope they can now kick on and achieve promotion again.”
Milligan spent the latter stages of last season on loan at Hyde, where he played a key role in the club’s Conference survival.
It gave him a chance to play regular football at what Milligan regards as a very competitive level. He said: “The Conference is a good league. You’re still playing at a good standard. There are part-time and full-time professional clubs in there but there’s not a lot between them.
“I was at Hyde last year, who are part time and we picked up some very good results. Southport are part-time too but I think we’ve still got a strong squad and can mount a challenge.”
As well as continuing his playing career, Milligan is now working full-time as a coach at Blackpool and is completing his coaching badges. And he’s found himself learning along side some of the game’s biggest names. I’m doing my ‘A’ licence right now with Robbie Fowler and Peter Schmeichel. They’re great lads. It’s hard work but enjoyable.”
Milligan will get a chance to line up against his former team-mates when Fleetwood Town travel to Haig Avenue for their final pre-season friendly on July 27.