Something about Tuesday night’s win over AFC Wimbledon feels absolutely huge. Its easy to highlight the importance of a single goal victory that could have gone either way but what this victory meant could turn out to be so much more that ‘important’ just doesn’t do it justice.
Luke Guttridge’s headed winner ten minutes from time not only bagged three precious points for the Cobblers but also closed the gap on those above us – Dagenham and Plymouth – enough for us all to be level on points by the end of the night. A cameo from new loan signing Toni Silva, an exciting 18-year-old winger from Liverpool signed for a month on Tuesday afternoon, including a mazy run to set up Guttridge’s goal also caught the eye as Town completed a league double over Terry Brown’s men. Indeed, a quarter of our current points total has now come from Wimbledon.
There were positive debuts for Brett Williams, partnering Bayo up front, and Clarke Carlisle, keeping a clean sheet and leading from the back superbly as well as generally acting like the model captain, and the only concern coming out of this most positive of nights was another injury to a goalkeeper. Chris Weale limped off right at the end and will be back in Leicester today so that his parent club can assess him. With Shane Higgs suffering a long term injury soon after Boothroyd signed him we have to hope that this doesn’t become a curse of the keepers. Early signs are that it’s nowhere near the level of Higg’s blow though and with a week to recover we might still have Weale back with us soon.
The fact that we don’t have to go to FA Cup participants Crawley Town on Saturday could work in our favour for after a blank weekend with no action we have two more home games to try and really turn around what has been a dire run, before last night, of results at Sixfields.
We will await the fates of Dagenham (who host Cheltenham) and Plymouth (who go to Accrington) before the visit of Macclesfield next Tuesday. The Silkmen themselves could yet be dragged into trouble if we pick up another three points there as they’re in free fall at the moment thanks to six straight defeats. While concentrating on ourselves should be the priority, it doesn’t harm the cause to bring others into it!
For now, rejoice! Because our team has won a game of football again, enjoy the week ahead knowing that there is still bags of hope where there once was none and look forward to trying to do it all again in seven days’ time.