There’s been transfer talk, big name exits and a cup defeat this week so now’s the time to start getting back behind the club. That’s the manager, the players and the staff as a whole as we head to Southend, a ground at which we’ve not won at since 2003. On that day, a Paul Trollope free kick was enough to win, a fortunate in swinger that deceived the Shrimper’s back line and any sort of luck like that would be more than welcome eight years down the line.
It’s been a turbulent week for the Cobblers with Shaun Harrad’s well publicised departure from the club, exit from the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and Kevin Thornton’s send off at the end of his month to month deal stealing the headlines. But now we somehow need to put everything behind us and really focus on what we have at our disposal, which is still a strong squad and a support that will never go away no matter who is or isn’t playing for our team.
Just one win would put everyone back in a good mood and help to really get the lads motivated once again for this latest chapter of the on-going drama of Northampton Town.
The Cobblers have lost four home games in two weeks so will be fairly happy to be away from the pressures of Sixfields. Cheltenham, Wolves, Morecambe and Huddersfield have left with victories over that time and we now have to hope that we can put it all to bed on the road.
Southend have had a mixed start to the season with back to back victories kicking things off before two defeats brought them back down to earth. An away day win at Port Vale last week had them back on track though and that was backed up by a JPT success in midweek in a hard fought game with Crawley which they edged 1-0 at Roots Hall.
Better news this week for the Cobblers could see Ashley Westwood return to central defence after missing the last couple of games whilst Jake Robinson may be available again to partner Bayo Akinfenwa up front. Nana is also in contention and could return to left back if he can dislodge Ben Tozer from the berth in which he performed well in on Tuesday night.
Southend manager Paul Sturrock will be without Neil Harris and Liam Dickinson for the game with Harris out with a groin injury and Dickinson serving the first of a three match ban after seeing red in Tuesday night’s victory over Crawley. Midfielder Michael Timlin re-joined on loan from Swindon this week and goes straight into the squad.
26/02/11: Southend 1-1 Cobblers
In a tight match at Roots Hall, the Cobblers take the lead through John Johnson before Barry Corr equalises minutes later. This was to be the final of six draws in a row in early 2011 and would end up being Ian Sampson’s final away game in charge.
11/09/10: Cobblers 2-1 Southend
The Cobblers win for the first time in the league last season as Anthony Grant’s 57th minute strike is cancelled out by Abdul Osman. Andy Holt nets the winner with fifteen minutes to go and we were finally up and running in the League Two campaign.
13/04/09: Cobblers 2-3 Southend
A Bank Holiday encounter goes the way of the Shrimpers as Jean-Francois Christophe puts the visitors in front in the first half. The second comes to life after the break though as Bayo Akinfenwa levels and Theo Robinson puts Southend back into the lead. Lee Barnard’s goal a few minutes later to extend the lead and Aleksandar Prijovic’s striker is only a consolation for the Cobblers late on.
26/12/08: Southend 1-0 Cobblers
A Boxing day match at Roots Hall ends with Southend victorious thanks to Junior Stanislas’ winner in stoppage time. That was after Abdul Osman had been sent off for the Cobblers with fifteen minutes to go but we couldn’t quite hold out for a point.
12/04/08: Southend 1-1 Cobblers
Towards the end of the 2007/08 season, Colin Larkin heads the Cobblers in front at Roots Hall but Lee Barnard earns his side a draw.
03/11/07: Cobblers 0-1 Southend
At the start of a run that saw the Cobblers go winless until mid-December, Adam Barrett heads home the only goal of the game at Sixfields.
The Man In The Middle…
Simon Hooper takes charge on Saturday and this is his first match involving the Cobblers since we beat Dagenham and Redbridge 1-0 away in February 2010.
After such a bad week off the pitch, I’d take a point here and I can see us getting it by hook or by crook…I’ll go for 1-1.