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19 September 2020 Venue Montgomery Waters Meadow Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Match preview: Northampton Town

18 September 2020

Marcus Braddock previews Town's first home game of the Sky Bet League One season.

Our first Sky-bet League One game of the 2020/21 season sees Northampton Town travel to Montgomery Waters Meadow. The Cobblers were promoted through the play-offs last season having finished in 7th place. Manager Keith Curle has been in his post since October 2018 and has a win ratio of just over 40% since joining the Cobblers. He's a manager with a wealth of experience with over 700 games as a center-back and 511 as a manager to call upon.

So far, the Cobblers have played twice as many games as we have with one league game, two Carabao Cup games, and a Checkatrade game.

Their first game of the season was at home to Cardiff City in the EFL Cup, a game they won 3-0 - with goals from Harry Smith, Matt Warburton and Ryan Watson. They visited Milton Keynes the following Tuesday in the Checkatrade Trophy but this time they conceded three.

Last Saturday saw the Cobblers in league action for the first time with the visit of AFC Wimbledon. Having conceded in the first minute of the game, Northampton drew level through Matt Warburton in the 19th minute. Four minutes later and they were 2-1 down but they only had to wait eight minutes before Ricky Korboa to draw level for a second time. The rest of the game was goalless meaning that both teams have the same amount of points as we do.

On Wednesday, Northampton faced Bristol City at Ashton Gate in the second round of the League Cup. Having kept a clean sheet for most of the first half, things started to go wrong when Chris Martin scored with a header in the 43rd minute. Kasey Palmer grabbed a second goal for City just 3 minutes into the second half and Antoine Semenyo effectively finished the game in the 82nd minute. Kasey Palmer finished the scoring in the 88th minute with his second of the game.

Form

WLDL

Having played four games in three different competitions, I'm not sure how reliable this “form” actually is as an indicator of future results. They've scored six times, giving them an average of 1.5 goals per game. Of the nine goals they've conceded, seven have been scored on the road although all seven of those were from cup games.

New faces

Having lost Defender Charlie Goode for a club-record, but undisclosed, fee, Keith Curle has been pretty busy in the transfer market. He's added to his defensive options with Lincoln's Cian Bolger and Forest Green defender Joseph Mills. Carshalton's Ricky Korboaand and Wolves' Bernard Ashley-Seal should strengthen the front line.

Familiar Faces

Northampton number 1 Steve Arnold signed for the Cobblers last June after making 32 appearances in one season with Town

Number 13 and Northampton's second keeper with a Shrewsbury link is Jonathan Mitchell who was on loan with Shrewsbury Town from January to may 2019 on loan from Derby. Mitchell played nine games for us and is still on loan from Derby.

Summary

This weekend's game has been a little overshadowed by the fact that fans will be allowed to attend. 1000 supporters will be in attendance in a carefully managed pilot game permitted by the Government. That means that although the majority of town fans will not be in attendance, many of us may be able to get to a game at some point in the future.

The actual game will be interesting, we've only played twice to the Cobblers four games and I wonder if we'll benefit from fewer games or if Northampton will be able to force the pace. So far Northampton haven't been involved in a goalless game so I'm hoping for at least one more goal than last weekend and a second clean sheet would be pretty handy too.

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Match Reports

Match report: Shrewsbury Town 1 Northampton Town 2

19 September 2020

Town fall to defeat at home against promoted Northampton Town.

Town’s first league game at home in the 2020/21 campaign ended in defeat as Northampton Town were able to capitalise against the run of play and leave with all three points.

Despite the constant control of the game after going a goal behind early on, it was the visitors who were able to find a winner out of nothing as Sam Hoskins cancelled out the Shaun Whalley equaliser mid-way through the second half.

The opening exchanges saw a clash of heads between Town captain Ethan Ebanks-Landell and Northampton’s Benny Ashley-Seal. Ashley-Seal managed to climb to his feet in good time, as for Ebanks-Landell, he was shortly replaced by Josh Daniels and the armband was passed to Town 10 Josh Vela.

After a lack of chances for either side in the opening ten minutes, it was the away side that broke the deadlock in the 12th minute. Left-back Joseph Mills hit the by-line and cut back the cross beating the Town defenders and forward, Mark Marshall, found a yard of space to smash home.

Town’s first real chance of the game came just after the 20-minute mark, a delightful lofted ball from Jason Cummings onto the toes of Rekeil Pyke. Luckily for Northampton, Steve Arnold was well-positioned to keep the away side in the lead.

As the game approached the half time break, Town were tiring the visitors with long spells of possession. They managed to break into the box down the left through Shaun Walley, who aimed to poke his effort in at the near post but saw the ball agonisingly roll along the goal line and no Town player was there to equalise.

As the first half stoppage of six minutes started to peter out, Town came close again with a long-range effort from left-back Scott Golbourne. The ball came rolling out to him just outside the box and his slashed effort, aiming for the far corner, was beaten away by the ever so solid Cobbler’s keeper, Arnold.

Town looked to pick up where they left off in the second half with long spells of possession and again used the wide men in Rickett’s new 4-3-3 set up as the main outlet for the switch pass to get them on the break.

Town’s Shaun Whalley broke through with 51 minutes on the clock after a mistimed Northampton challenge put the ball through to Whalley who had time to look up but only fire his strike into the clutch of Arnold.

Moments later, Walley found himself latching onto another deep switch by Cummings and this time his curling effort too much for Arnold and Town find their constant pressure finally paying off with the equaliser.

Northampton found themselves in the lead out of nothing. A ball was hooked forward and on-coming Town keeper, Matija Sarkic misjudged the bounce and found himself in no man’s land as Sam Hoskins tapped into the empty net.

Sarkic was called into action after 70 minutes as the ball was bouncing back and forth in the Town box and when the trigger was pulled by goalscorer Hoskins, the Town keeper made himself big and denied the effort.

The Teams:

Town: 31. Matija Sarkic, 3.Scott Golbourne, 5.Ro-Shaun Williams, 7.Shaun Whalley, 9.Rekeil Pyke (Udoh 69’), 10.Josh Vela, 16.Brad Walker, 18.Marlon Fossey (Love 84’), 24.Ethan Ebanks-Landell (Daniels 5’), 25.Scott High, 35.Jason Cummings.

Subs: 1. Harry Burgoyne, 12.Ryan Sears, 17.Donald Love, 22.Josh Daniels, 23.Daniel Udoh, 26.James Rowland, 36.Louis Lloyd.

Northampton: 1.Steve Arnold, 2.Micheal Harriman, 3.Joe Martin, 5.Cian Bolger, 7.Sam Hoskins, 8.Ryan Watson, 20.Matt Warburton (Lines 86’), 22.Benny Ashley-Seal (Chukwuemeka 44’), 23.Joseph Mills, 27.Christopher Missilou, 45.Mark Marshall (Roberts 90’).

Subs: 13.Jonathan Mitchell, 14.Chris Lines, 19.Morgan Roberts, 31.Ethan Johnston, 30.Caleb Chukwuemeka, 32.M.Dyche, 33.J.Flanagan

Referee: Neil Hair

Assistant Referees: Steven Plane, Christopher Husband

Fourth Official: David Hunt

Bookings:

Northampton midfielder Christopher Missilou brought down Shaun Whalley on his weaving run towards the edge of the area and was booked for his niggle on his way into the challenge.

Town’s Josh Daniels entered the book after a late challenge on the edge of the Town box.

Scott High saw yellow after a high challenge on Northampton 45, Mark Marshall.

Northampton substitute Caleb Chukwuemeka was booked after kicking the ball away twice in a matter of minutes.

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