COBBLERS QUICK OFF THE MARC
NORTHAMPTON might want to consider moving their home games to Dagenham & Redbridge after winning there for a fifth consecutive time on Saturday to leave boss Chris Wilder purring.
Marc Richards gave an illustration of his goal-poaching expertise with a well-timed run and finish for the Cobblers’ first and a clever header for the second effectively to end the match as a contest after 23 minutes.
Richards was indebted to a strong sprint down the left by Kaid Mohamed for the opener and a rehearsed corner-kick routine for the clincher, taking his personal tally for the season to four.
The number nine might have had more, too, with an effort cleared off the line and Liam O’Brien making a good save from another effort, all in the first half.
Mohamed and winger Chris Hackett also had chances well saved and, with the Daggers being held at arm’s length, visiting manager Chris Wilder felt the performance was one of the best Northampton have produced during his nine-month tenure.
“I’m delighted that we’ve gone away from home and produced a performance like that, with that pace and power,” he said.
“They are a really good footballing side, they try to overload the midfield and use their pace in the wide areas and (Jamie) Cureton has been a revelation for them this season.
“In all parts of the game we were excellent and I think that the game was done and dusted in the first half.
“I’d like to think we were smart in the second half and made good decisions.
“We created chances and defended well so the first 45 minutes would be up there among my best since I’ve been here.
“But it would have counted for nothing if we hadn’t done our jobs again.
“We knew they’d have a go and raise the tempo and we dealt with that well.”
One of the key elements of the visitors’ dominance was in the wide areas, where Mohamed on the left and Hackett on the right had very good games.
Dagenham boss Wayne Burnett was not happy with the way his full-backs dealt with those threats.
“We’ve come up against a very, very good Northampton team and you can’t give teams of their quality twogoal starts and expect to come back from it,” he said.
“We made poor decisions off the ball and were made to pay for them. Our incorrect decisions have cost us in this game.
“In the first half we let too many crosses come into our box - Damian Batt and Matty Patrridge are in the team to stop the ball coming in and anything else they do for the team is a bonus.
“I told them on Friday that was their job but there were far too many crosses coming in, especially in the first half.
“And after that we have to be better at defending setpieces in general.”
PLACEMENT: Marc Richards scores the second goal for Northampton
DELIGHT: Marc Richards celebrates