Bayo’s goals, the emergence of youth, the reinvention of captain Langmead. All positive elements of the 2012/13 season so far for the Cobblers. But one man is only just appearing to get the ultimate praise that he so deserves as the architect of many of those goals and an relative experienced head that those young lads to look up to. Chris Hackett has been nominated for League Two player of the month and it’s been brewing for a while.
Hackett joined the Cobblers only last summer and this particular blogger was unfairly cynical at first. Indeed just a year earlier we had signed, under some fanfare, Aaron Davies – a man whose flair and past glories at a higher level sent a few murmurs of excitement through Sixfields. Davies was a spark for a while but only on spontaneous days when he felt like playing. There’s also been countless other ‘flying wingers’ signing on at Sixfields over the years that promise a lot more than they actually produce.
But Hackett has been a fine example of the opposite. Coming down to League Two felt like a drop by his standards but unlike some who have gone before, he saw it as a challenge and his performances reflected not a man just happy to pick up a wage based on reputation alone but one with the desire to reach back up to a previous level with the group of players that he now calls his team.
We finally have a supplier of goals and not just a scorer of them, though Hackett has supplied his own contenders for goals of the season, and the likes of Bayo and Clive Platt have thrived on his crosses, fed off his energy and been grateful of endless assists from the former Millwall man.
The winger is now up for the big prize of the month and whether he wins or not he’s at least getting the recognition that he deserves for an excellent season up to this point. If he can continue to shine then maybe we’ll have not a player of past glories but one of a rejuvenated future.