Wilder’s new era too much for Pools
FOR CHRIS Wilder it wasn’t exactly New Year’s Eve – but it could be the start of a new era all the same.
Victory for his Northampton side over Hartlepool may leave them still bottom of League Two and five points from safety, but it could signal a new start for his strugglers.
This was their first home win since November 30 and it was a deserved one over one of the division’s form teams.
Two goals in a minute either side of half-time, from Mathias Doumbe and Brennan Dickenson, both turning home from inside the sixyard box gave the Cobblers three muchneeded points.
“Everyone should enjoy results like this, especially after they haven’t been great this season. It’s not New Year’s Eve – I’m not going to be partying until 2am!’’ joked Wilder.
“But I will certainly feel good about the weekend and I hope the supporters do, they’ve not had a lot to cheer about recently.
“I think we all will be encouraged by this performance and the football we played all.
“The days where I will take defeat and accept it aren’t here, it will never happen.
“The players looked as if we have given ourselves a fighting chance with performances like this – we worked hard.
“There’s still a long way to go, a third of the season and a lot of points to play for. Let’s enjoy the weekend and get back to work on Monday for a big game on Tuesday.”
In truth, the first half was a torrid affair. Neither side looked capable - or willing – to take charge.
The opening goal was the game’s first opening, coming four minutes into six of added on time. Chris Hackett’s free-kick was headed back across goal by the unmarked Joe Widdowson and, amid a scramble, Doumbe got the touch to turn the ball in. Less than a minute into the second half, Hackett crossed and Dickenson got their first in the six-yard area to convert.
Wilder added: “Everyone played their part, individually and collectively and you could see the belief coming back into the team, especially after we got the first goal.
Midfielder Simon Walton bobbled a shot against the post for Pools, before Luke Williams finally drew a save from keeper Matt Duke.
“The boys were very honest afterwards,’’ said Pools boss Colin Cooper.
“For whatever reason they didn’t’ play like they are capable of.
“They felt tired and leggy. Even though we made two changes to the team to try and freshen it up a bit, it hasn’t quite worked.”
STAR MAN ZANDE