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Match Previews

Match Preview: Northampton Town v Fleetwood Town

11 August 2017

The Cod Army take to the road for the first time this season as they visit Sixfields to take on Northampton Town on Saturday (3pm).

Fleetwood will be looking to emulate the performance from their opening day, where Conor McAleny’s brace sealed a 2-0 win over Rotherham United, and bounce back from the midweek cup defeat to Carlisle.

The Cobblers have begun their season with two 1-0 defeats, at Shrewsbury in the league and Queens Park Rangers in the cup, respectively.

A Point To Prove?

With those two early defeats, Northampton will be looking to bounce back and get their season off and running.

Despite a solid season in the league ending with a 16th place finish, the Cobblers did go on a good cup run, reaching the Third Round of the EFL Cup. Having beaten Championship side Barnsley and then Premier League West Bromwich Albion in round one and two, Town were drawn to face Manchester United at Sixfields, eventually losing 3-1.

They’ll be looking to mirror last season’s cup heroics in the league, and improve up their bottom half finish from last term.

Facing Their Old Club

Striker Chris Long could face the Cod Army on Saturday. Long spent a season on loan at Town last term, scoring four times in his 18 appearance on loan from Burnley.

Long made his Cobblers debut in Saturday’s defeat at Shrewsbury and also made an appearance at Loftus Road.

We’ve Met Before

Meetings between the two Town’s have been aplenty over the years, and it’s been a fixture favourable for the home team. In the six meetings so far, both sides have won three apiece, all on their home turf, with the one draw coming at Sixfields on the opening day of last season.

The other meeting last season was a 3-0 win for the Cod Army, with goals from Devante Cole, Bobby Grant and David Ball

We also met in 2009 when then non-league Fleetwood were beaten 2-1 in an FA Cup tie. Sean Clancy scored Town’s goal in the First Round tie.

Ones To Watch

Dean Bowditch signed for the Cobblers in the summer after a six year spell at MK Dons. Having been at stadium:mk since 2011, Bowditch made the switch to Sixfields after his release and signed a two year contract.

Bowditch scored 37 times in just under 200 appearances for the Dons. Despite being a natural midfielder, Bowditch has sometimes been played as a striker and was the top scorer for MK Dons in the 2012/13 season. His Northampton debut came in the defeat at Shrewsbury last Saturday and he also featured in the cup game at QPR.

Another player poached from a few junctions down the M1 is striker Daniel Powell. Powell spent nine years at stadium:mk before the move to Northampton, racking up nearly 50 goals in over 200 appearances. Powell was a key component of the Dons League One promotion season, scoring eight times. Powell has been described as unpredictable, which could be a problem for the Cod Army on Saturday.

Midfield maestro Matt Crooks is another player to take note of ahead of Saturday’s clash. Crooks was tipped by John Coleman to have a bright future in the game, and the former Accrington Stanley midfielder made headlines when he signed for Rangers in the summer of 2016. Having made sporadic appearances for the Scottish club, due to injury, Crooks returned to south of the border and signed for Scunthorpe, where he scored three times in a short loan spell.


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