The Cobblers head to South Wales on Good Friday for the first of what could be an exhausting few days for our injury-hit squad. With a home game with Gillingham to come just three days after this one, it could be a pivotal weekend at the top of League Two. If we can come out of these two games still with a four point gap to third I think most will be very happy!
It’s been a stop/start season for Newport so far but a managerial change in October seems to have helped to ease any kind of relegation fears that were apparent early on. James Rowberry was dismissed after a run of nine defeats in the opening fourteen league games. In came former Bristol Rovers and Mansfield boss Graham Coughlin and, though County still sit in the same league position as when he arrived, there’s definitely a feel that they are working towards a solid long term goal.
Since a draw at Sixfields in Coughlin’s second game in charge, salvaged only by a Sam Hoskins equaliser in stoppage time, County have only lost five times in the league and can be a match for most sides on their day.
There’s a patience and understanding of where they’re at thanks to their status as being fan owned and Coughlin seems to be the right man in the right place for a longer term plan to get Newport back into the running for the playoffs and promotion, which they’ve challenged for a couple of times since their arrival back in the Football League in 2013.
Last Time Out
Newport drew 0-0 at Colchester United last weekend while the Cobblers were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Stevenage.
One To Watch
No-one could have been expected to match Dom Telford’s goal tally for Newport from last season but Omar Bogle is an experienced head leading their line and can be a real handful on his day. Bogle is top scorer with nine so far this season.
Newport striker Offrande Zanzala will miss the rest of this season and the start of next season after suffering a knee injury. Defender Priestley Farquharson could return after missing the last two games.
The Cobblers are definitely still without Tyler Magloire, Ali Koiki and Ben Fox, who are out for the season and Max Dyche is likely out until at least the summer too. Shaun McWilliams, Josh Harrop, Josh Eppiah and Danny Hylton are also still missing and Jonathan Maxted was added to the injured list last weekend. Jack Sowerby felt his hamstring during the Stevenage game and had to come off at half-time so he’ll be checked on ahead of Good Friday.
Leigh Doughty is the man charged with officiating this one. Doughty hasn’t taken charge of a Cobblers game since a 1-1 home draw with Sunderland in January 2021. Daniel Leach and Lee Venamore are running the lines and Alan Young is fourth official.
Newport seem to struggle with how they start games so I’m going for an early goal for the Cobblers and a nervy 1-0 win in South Wales.
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.