We’re down to the final four and every single game now takes on huge significance. A Tuesday night away game at this stage of the season is always going to be tough and after the Cobblers put everything on the line to get a draw at Carlisle, it could be hard to go again so quickly with the same amount of effort.
But this squad is special and defy the odds on a weekly basis and with over 500 Town fans again expected to travel we should have another loud and passionate following to try and sing us to a victory that would mean so much.
Sutton are in their second season back in the Football League and have once again shown that, on their day, they’re a match for anyone with their underdog spirit built up by their manager -once touted by many as a potential successor to Keith Curle at the Cobblers – Matt Gray.
The U’s just missed out on the playoffs last season as they finished in eighth place in League Two and just one point away from taking on the Cobblers instead of Mansfield in that end of season lottery. Things have been a lot more inconsistent this time around with a nine game unbeaten run from late January to mid-March keeping them right in the hunt before four defeats and two draws in the following six games derailing any hope of a push for the top seven again this time around.
Having lost their last three games to promotion chasers in Stockport, Bradford and Leyton Orient, the Cobblers will be hoping to make that four from four but with Sutton under Gray there’s always the sense that they could click back into form again at any point.
To be in and around the top ten is testament to the job that Gray has done at the club and, though another season in League Two looks very likely, the future is looking positive for the Amber and Chocolates.
Last Time Out
Sutton were beaten 2-0 at home to League One bound Leyton Orient on Saturday while the Cobblers battled to a 0-0 draw at Carlisle.
One To Watch
Winger David Ajiboye left Sutton last summer in a deal that took him to that blue lot down the road for an undisclosed fee but the U’s went back in for him in January and secured a loan deal until the end of the season after Ajiboye’s minutes had become limited at London Road. With pace and trickery to burn, Ajiboye will give Ryan Haynes a real test on that wing on Tuesday night.
Ben Goodliffe missed out for Sutton at the weekend due to the birth his son on Friday night so he could come back into contention for Tuesday night. Captain Craig Eastmond limped out of the recent defeat to Stockport with a knee injury and he’s missed the last two games so will be a doubt once again for this one.
The Cobblers, as we’ve come to expect now, face a long list of problems with Ben Fox, Aaron McGowan, Akin Odimayo, Josh Harrop and Tyler Magloire out for the season. Harvey Lintott was the latest to drop out with Jack Sowerby slotting in at right back on Saturday but Sean McWilliams returned to action from the bench. Jon Brady hinted that one more may return to the squad on Tuesday night but that one or two new knocks have become apparent since the weekend.
David Rock is in charge on Tuesday night with his last Cobblers game coming just over a year ago for our 0-0 home draw with Bradford. Justin Amey and Damith Bandara are running the lines and Andy Bennett is fourth official.
It’s another quick turn around but I’m backing this team to go and put it all out there again at Sutton. We need to win and I think we will. 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.