Match Preview: Northampton Town v Barrow

Northampton Town v Barrow FA Cup First Round

The Cobblers seem to be creating an unwanted new tradition of falling out of form when the FA Cup comes around and this season is no different as we head into a potential banana skin tie (tick that one off the bingo cards!) against League Two Barrow at Sixfields. The game comes hot on the heels of a shocker of a performance at Pride Park on Tuesday night and Jon Brady will be demanding a reaction.
Town have gone out of the FA Cup in Round One in each of the last three seasons but will see this as a chance to progress and potentially go to within one game of a money-spinning tie with a Premier League outfit. To do that, though, we’ll need to be on it from the start against a Barrow side that come into the game with opposite feelings to ours having just beaten Morecambe in a local derby on Tuesday night.
That banana skin is right in front of us. For everyone’s sake, we need to step right around it and get this form back on track.

The Opposition

After the Cobblers beat Barrow 2-0 at Holker Street back in January, the Bluebirds went on to keep up their playoff push against the odds but finished just short of the end of season lottery. Pete Wild and the fan base, though, saw real signs of life and potential in those final few months of the season and Wild has made some shrewd signings over the summer, combining experienced heads with up and comers.
The likes of Jamie Proctor, David Worrall and James Chester have all been around the block at higher levels and bring bags of knowhow to a squad who were already fighting well with the so-called bigger names of League Two. Add to that Dom Telford, top scorer in the entire division a couple of seasons ago when with Newport County, and his perfect foil in big Emile Acquah and this looks a dangerous squad.
Barrow have also kept clean sheets in their last four games with a backline of Chester, the towering George Ray and Niall Canavan providing a solid base ahead of last season’s player of the year Paul Farman. Tuesday night’s victory over Morecambe took them up to eighth place and they’re full of confidence ahead of the trip to Sixfields.


Last Time Out

The Cobblers were hammered 4-0 at Derby County on Tuesday night while Barrow were beating Morecambe 1-0 at Holker Street.

One To Watch

Striker Emile Acquah is likely to be the one to causing the problems in the Cobblers defence to try and open up the space or provide the knock downs for Dom Telford on Saturday. The big centre forward signed from Maidenhead in the summer and hit the ground running, scoring in three of his first six games for the club.
Acquah now has five in total but it’s the partnership with Telford that has got Barrow fans excited.

Team News

The Cobblers could welcome back a couple of our recently injured players (Jon Guthrie, Jack Sowerby and Louis Appéré) but Keiron Bowie serves the final game of his three game suspension. Max Dyche, Ben Fox, Tyler Magoire and Danny Hylton are long term absentees.

Barrow have no fresh injury concerns ahead of the weekend but Robbie Gotts could come back into the side after suspension with former Cobbler Sam Foley possibly making way in their midfield.

Line-Up Prediction

Match Officials

Paul Howard is the referee for Saturday’s game at Sixfields. Howard hasn’t officiated a Cobblers game since a 1-1 home draw with Walsall in March 2022. Anthony Da Costa and Richard Wigglesworth are running the lines and Oliver Mackey is fourth official.


This is likely to be a really tough tie against a side coming into form in League Two. I think we will nick it but it may not be pretty! 1-0 Cobblers


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