Saturday, May 7th 2011
Two games ago we were willing the season to end, desperate to end the fears of relegation but when the curtain did finally fall, Cobblers fans can be forgiven for wishing that the campaign continued a little longer. If last weekend’s victory was timely but rare, more so was back to back wins that meant we finished in a more respectable sixteenth place in the final standings.
The story wasn’t just a decent win at Morecambe watched by a terrific band of travelling fans but the squad that was cut to five subs with those not travelling expected to be on their way once the retained list is announced on Monday. That list included Ryan Gilligan who is under contract but has been told that he can find a new club, rumoured to be Plymouth Argyle. Leon McKenzie also looks to be off along with Abdul Osman and Marcus Hall but there may yet be more additions once that list is revealed.
One man that has earned a second thought is Kevin Thornton and having put in a fine performance last week, opened the scoring at the Globe Arena, stabbing home after a couple of rebounds. Thornton is a frustrating player when you see him play so well but the thoughts are that he wants to stay and with a summer under Gary Johnson we have to hope he final fulfils his undoubted promise.
Guillem Bauza is another on the brink but his situation could be more of a question of whether he wants to stay rather than whether we want him or not. The Spaniard nearly doubled the lead in the first half with a lobbed effort before Danny Carlton tested Chris Dunn.
The Cobblers were putting in an excellent shift and with pressure off it appeared a more relaxed and confident performance. The lead was doubled by Ben Tozer in his final game before the end of his loan. He would have done his prospects of returning no harm with a superb half volley that made it 2-0.
There was no massive fight back from Morecambe but they did halve the deficit with injury time approaching with a scrambled effort from Niall Cowperthwaite but there was no late fight back and we signed off with a very good victory on the road, only a third away win of the season.
That meant that we leapfrogged the hosts in the final table and other results mean that the Cobbler ended up in sixteenth. To say it could have been worse is an understatement of the highest kind but once the clear out is complete and the dust settles we have to ensure that this shocker of a season doesn’t happen again for a very long time.