Games between Northampton Town and Leyton Orient have become one of the most highly anticipated fixtures on the calendar for Cobblers fans.
The fixture tends to provide real entertainment and this season both teams are fighting for promotion from League Two.
Richie Wellens’ side have stormed to the top of the league, winning 16 of their 23 games and only losing twice.
While he hasn’t done too well i League One, Wellens has a knack of creating brilliant teams in League Two. His Swindon side of 2019/20 won the league and few will be surprised if Orient follow suit.
The O’s boast a considerable amount of talent with the likes of Omar Beckles, George Moncur, Paul Smyth, Aaron Drinan and Charlie Kelman playing in their team.
Interestingly, for a team riding high at the top of the table, no one player has hit double figures in the scoring ranks as yet. Paul Smyth is top scorer with 8.
Instead, Orient have spread their 35 goals scored around. It’s probably what makes them so dangerous.
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Northern Ireland striker Paul Smyth is the O’s top scorer this season with 8 goals.
After several loan spells with the likes of Wycombe, Charlton and Accrington (twice), Smyth signed for Orient in the summer of 2021 upon the expiry of his contract with QPR.
Ali Koiki and Jack Sowerby look set to be missing again for the Cobblers. Sowerby did return to the team for the draw at Mansfield but then missed Thursday night’s defeat to Swindon so could be out again.
Richie Wellens is waiting on the fitness of Paul Smyth who pulled his quad in the warm-up before Friday’s game against Newport.
The O’s have had 1 less day to rest and prepare for Monday’s game than the Cobblers and Wellens chose to rest a couple of his squad on Friday so could be prioritising this game.
Chris Pollard is the man in charge. The experienced referee has taken charge of 14 games so far this season. He’s brandished a total of 49 yellow cards and no reds so far in 2022/23.
Pollard was last in charge of the Cobblers in last season’s EFL Trophy. He presided over both the loss at Sixfields to Brighton’s Under-21s and the 1-1 draw at Forest Green.
Paul Yates and Nicholas Cooper are running the lines while Carl Boyeson is fourth official.
I got very frustrated during the defeat to Swindon on Thursday despite the Cobblers playing well for the majority of the game.
Results are all important but the performance did warrant more than the Cobblers got under the Sixfields floodlights.
With results having gone our way on Sunday, any points will see us gain on those around us and that’s a real positive.
I am worried about the dangers Leyton Orient possess, they’re the best team in the league by far this season so a draw will be a good result.
I think the Cobblers will be looking to bounce back and doing all they can to get the win but I’m going for a 1-1 draw.
Charles is the founder and main presenter of the award-winning It’s All Cobblers To Me podcast.
He began the podcast after going self-employed in 2018 as a podcast producer and voiceover artist. The original thought being that It’s All Cobblers To Me would be a place to try out new things – like a test podcast of sorts.
As well as being Cobblers mad, Charles is also a ultramarathon runner and has a blog about that that he tries to keep up to date as often as he can.