Crawley Town v Northampton Town Match Preview – Can the Cobblers pile more misery on John Yems and his interviewers?
There’s only one question on the mind of all listeners of the pod this week and that’s how much further we can push Big John Yems into a hysterical state. The poor interviewers that line up to get his thoughts after every defeat, of which there’s been two out of three in the league so far, must be considering some sort of protective clothing going into the weekend. Yems first came to our attention after the 1-0 defeat to Hartlepool and went off again following last weekend’s 6-3 reverse at Forest Green Rovers. Saturday is, however, Yems’ birthday so maybe he’ll be in better spirits.
For the Cobblers, a disappointing late defeat at home to the real Dons in midweek saw all hopes of a glamour Third Round tie in the League Cup blow up almost as quickly as Yems when asked a regulation question. But most of us would swap that result for three points on Saturday which would go a long way to turn it back into a good start to the season.
As humorous as it is to visit John Yems corner every week there is a serious point to be made that this is a great chance for Town to take advantage of a club that doesn’t feel quite right. A couple of early chances or goals for Town down at The People’s Pension Stadium may well turn the home fans’ anger towards those in charge.
If you are making the journey, do be aware of staff shortages at the ground so the best bet would be to purchase tickets in advance and pick them up before 4pm on Friday.
The lesser known Red Devils finished in their highest position since relegation to League Two back in 2015 as they ended in twelfth place last season.
This season has started with a mixed bag thanks to the two defeats mentioned above. But there was a glimmer of light in their only league home game so far, a good 2-1 win over Salford. They also took League One Gillingham to penalties in the League Cup before eventually bowing out 10-9 in the shootout.
The hosts have been dealing with a large injury list to cope with in the early stages of the season with as many as nine players, including the influential Jordan Tunnicliffe, already missing games for various reasons.
Yems is likely a man who will want to come out fighting and we can expect a tough afternoon in West Sussex.
Last time out
Crawley were outdone by early pace setters Forest Green Rovers in their last outing, losing 6-3 at the New Lawn Stadium.
One to watch
Tom Nichols finished last season on 15 goals and 11 assists in all competitions and Crawley fans will hope he’s back fit again after missing the start of the season through injury.
Crawley will be sweating on the fitness of a number of players going into this one. Harry Ransom, Henry Burnett, Nick Tsaroulla, Jordan Tunnicliffe, Sam Matthews, Reece Grego-Cox, Tom Nichols and Sam Ashford have all been struggling for fitness but Yems will be hoping to at least welcome back some of those for the weekend.
Fraser Horsfall returned to the starting lineup after suspension in midweek so he will go straight back into the side again. Shaun McWilliams is rated as “touch and go” for the game after he was taken off during the defeat to Rochdale. Jordan Flores has been struggling with an Achilles injury and could also be a doubt. Jack Sowerby is back in training after a shoulder injury and bout of Covid.
A terrible Boxing Day defeat saw Nathan Ferguson put the hosts in front in the first half in John Yems’ first game in charge before Bez Lubala doubled the lead with a low shot. Ollie Palmer and Mason Bloomfield scored in the final ten minutes to compound our misery, leading Keith Curle to lament our “childish defending.”
Lee Swabey is an experienced head who is in his seventh season in the Football League. Swabey has past history with the Cobblers and Crawley, sending off Crawley’s Andy Bond in our 2-1 home win towards the end of the 2015/16 season. His last game in charge of the Cobblers was a 2-0 win over Salford in October 2019, during which he awarded us a penalty that Samuel Tobias Hoskins smashed in.
Charles: Crawley 2-0 Cobblers
Danny: Crawley 0-3 Cobblers. Yems is sacked after the game and goes full circle in his Crawley career.
Jefe: Crawley 1-2 Cobblers