The FA Cup is back! For the Cobblers, this is a chance to set off on the road towards a potential money spinning tie later down the line. But standing in our way is a sleeping giant of the National League. Chesterfield are not only among the favourites for promotion back into the EFL but are also led by Paul Cook, who will be salivating at the chance of knocking out a league club from the competition.
A big atmosphere is expected and Jon Brady’s men cannot afford to arrive with anything close to the levels shown against Newport or there’s a chance that we could be beaten before we’ve even realised the game has started. Mentally and physically, this one is going to be a real battle.
Chesterfield are in their fifth season in the National League having been in League One as recently as 2017. The Spireites have struggled to get back into the EFL despite showing some real hope in the last couple of seasons. Following a Quarter Final exit in the playoffs two seasons ago, they were edged out again (this time in the Semi-Finals) back in May and will be determined to finally end their exile this season.
Bringing in Paul Cook to replace James Rowe, who left under a misconduct charge in February, appears to be a master stroke. The man who led them to the League Two title in 2014 before having another superb season a year later by taking them to the League One playoffs. Cook then left for Portsmouth but is now back to attempt to write even more history at a club where he’s loved.
This season, the Spireites have started well again and sit third in the National League coming into the weekend. Over 7,000 turned up to watch them beat Boreham Wood last weekend and there should be another big crowd to welcome the Cobblers.
Last Time Out
Chesterfield won 2-0 at home to Boreham Wood in the National League last weekend and followed that up with a 2-1 home win over Gateshead on Tuesday night. The Cobblers drew 1-1 with Newport County at Sixfields last weekend.
One To Watch
Kabongo Tshimanga is the main man for Chesterfield. The striker scored 25 goals in all competitions last season and was named in the National League team of the season for the third season in a row.
Former Cobblers loanee Ollie Banks is set to be out for around five more weeks for Chesterfield but Paul Cook has no new injury worries ahead of the game.
Aaron McGowan came through last weekend’s game with Newport County and should be able to play a part again on Saturday as he makes his return from the injury that’s seen him sit out since the end of last season. Ben Fox returns from suspension but Danny Hylton sits out again after his red card at Stevenage. Ali Koiki and Josh Eppiah could still be missing and Tyler Magloire is likely to be out long term.
Adam Herczeg is taking charge of this one having never refereed a Cobblers game in his two and a bit years in the middle. Hristo Karaivanov & Richard Wigglesworth are running the lines and Stephen Finch is fourth official.
I’ve got massive fears about this one after the poor performance in our last one and a half games. Rotation could come into play and i just can’t see us coming away from it with a place in Round Two at a raucous Technique Stadium. Chesterfield 2-1 Cobblers
A Cobblers fan all his life, Danny is the most down to earth football supporter from Northampton.
While at university in Southampton, Danny kept up to date with all things NTFC from afar, sharing his thoughts on his ‘A Load Of Cobblers’ online blog.