By Brian Bennett
Dean Briggs revealed he could not turn down a career move to Dubai – as he sets off for pastures new tomorrow (Monday).
Briggs signed off with a goal in Ashington’s 4-0 victory over Billingham Town at The dwmedia Stadium on Saturday to take his tally up to 15 goals in all competitions this term.
The midfielder – who first made his debut for the Colliers as a teenager when his father Perry was assistant manager to Gary Middleton – said: “My friend already works over in Dubai and said there was a job opportunity for me – plus a bit of a lifestyle change – so I’m going to give it a go. It’s a big risk but at the end of the day it’s a big career opportunity for me and I couldn’t really say no. Obviously I will miss my football and that that was the one thing which I had to take into consideration. However if things don’t work out I’ll come back.”
Briggs – who returned to Woodhorn Lane before the start of last season – will leave with fond memories: “I love it here,” he said, “The facilities are great; there is a great group of lads at the club who get well looked and there is a big togetherness in the group. Then there are obviously the fans who are unreal – just look at our attendances as we are third in the table for the best supported club in the league – and that says it all.”
With 20 minutes remaining of the contest against the Teessiders on Saturday, Briggs side footed home Ashington’s second: “I wanted to go out on a goal and it was an unselfish lay off by Liam Doyle – especially as I didn’t slide him in beforehand – so fair play to him,” said 25 year old Briggs, who hit all four in midweek as the Colliers triumphed 4-2 against Newton Aycliffe: “That was the first time I had scored four for several years,” he added, “It was one of those nights where everything went the right way.”
Briggs believes Ashington can continue to make progress: “I think the club can go as high as it wants to go – and that’s their aspirations in the next few years,” he said, “They are doing very well this season but I think in three to five years they’ll be looking at wanting to go up – and there’s no reason why they can’t.”