Saturday, December 14th 2013
There’s a new man at the helm at Gigg Lane and on Saturday afternoon David Flitcroft will take charge of Bury for the first time. Having played over a hundred games for the Shakers between 2004 and 2006, Flitcroft knows exactly what the club is all about and he sets his sight on the Cobblers in his opening match as the top boss.
He will know exactly what the requirements are and has past experience of rescuing a season having taken Barnsley to Championship safety on the final day of last season. This time around was tougher, though, and Flitcroft left the Tykes at the bottom of the table before quickly returning to work at a Bury side who will be looking for more of the magic that saw their former player save his last club from the drop.
The Cobblers are still wobbling away from home and having been knocked out of the FA Cup by Grimsby Town last weekend we need something to help us put that result to bed. Victory at Gigg Lane would guarantee a leap out of the bottom two so that should be good incentive to try and upset the incoming manager.
After a good start to the season, the Shakers have slipped to the wrong end of things and are just two points above the Cobblers. It makes it a huge game for us as well as the hosts as we prepare for a Christmas period that could shape the second half of the season.
David Flitcroft has the luxury of no new injury worries or suspensions coming into his first game as Bury boss. Shaun Beeley sat out of their cup defeat to Cambridge United but he’s back in contention to face Town.
The Cobblers have Izale McLeod available again after the new loan signing was cup tied for Saturday’s defeat at Grimsby whilst Stuart Dallas is back after missing that game for the same reason. Roy O’Donovan has been back in training and is back in the squad so he will compete with McLeod, Clive Platt and Luke Norris for starting berths up front.
Previous Six Meetings…
09/04/11: Cobblers 2-4 Bury (League Two)
Bury stunned the Cobblers in the last game between the sides by going four up inside an hour thanks to goals from Ryan Lowe, Damien Mozika and two from Nicky Ajose. Shaun Harrad’s brace got us back some pride but the points went back to Gigg Lane as Bury took a giant leap towards League One.
21/08/10: Bury 1-1 Cobblers (League Two)
Steve Guinan’s penalty put the Cobblers in front with a penalty on the half hour mark but David Worrall’s second half goal meant that the points were shared.
08/05/10: Cobblers 1-1 Bury (League Two)
On the final day of the 2009/10 season and with the Cobblers chasing an unlikely playoff berth, Ryan Lowe’s goal on the stroke of half time sunk any hopes of a dramatic end to the campaign. The second half saw Bury’s James Poole sent off before Bayo Akinfenwa scored with his final touch of the ball in that spell as a Cobblers player to give us a draw.
10/10/09: Bury 2-2 Cobblers (League Two)
An excellent fight back from Town in October 2009 as David Worrall and Ryan Lowe’s goals were cancelled out by second half strikes from Courtney Herbert and Bayo Akinfenwa.
28/01/06: Bury 0-2 Cobblers (League Two)
The Cobblers had this game sealed before half time as an own goal from Andy Parrish and an Andy Kirk effort gave us the lead before the sending off of Bury’s Nathan Jarman gave us the platform to ease through the second half and claim an important three points.
10/09/05: Cobblers 1-1 Bury (League Two)
Simon Whaley gave the Shakers the lead in a tight contest at Sixfields. Allan Smart was sent off for the visitors, though, and the Cobblers grabbed an equaliser through Ryan Gilligan with seven minutes to play.
The man in the middle…
Nigel Miller is the referee at Gigg Lane on Saturday and he last officiated a Cobblers game in our 3-1 defeat at Rotherham United in February. He only refereed his first game on this season two weeks ago at Notts County’s home defeat to Brentford in League One.
It’s bad fortune that the Cobblers are coming up against Bury in their first game under a new manager but I think we can get something out of it to get back on track after the cup exit at Grimsby. 1-1.