Cobblers are ‘bang average’ says Chris
NORTHAMPTON’S threegoal defeat of Exeter may have sent Cobblers fans home happy, but manager Chris Wilder was less impressed, after a display he branded “bang average”.
The hosts picked up where they left off following Tuesday’s 3-0 dismissal of Blackpool in the Capital One Cup, leading Exeter by two goals at half-time. Exeter boss Paul Tisdale switched his side from 43-3 to 3-5-2 at the break, but the changes had little impact, with Wilder’s men grabbing a third late on.
Yet the former Oxford boss delivered a scathing verdict on his side’s performance.
“I don’t think it was impressive at all,” Wilder said. “The difference was the two boxes. I thought Exeter had just as much play as us.We scored three cracking goals, they’ve not had the bounce of the ball.
“I’m not going to gloss over it, I didn’t think that was very good.”
And Wilder emphasised the importance of consistency if the Cobblers are to push for promotion.
“I’m not trying to keep people’s feet on the ground. This is a tough division
“If we are going to achieve this season, we can’t fluctuate from okay to good performance last Saturday, to an outstanding performance on Tuesday night, to a bang average performance.”
Exeter were unable to keep up with the hosts’ dynamic attacking quartet of Nicky Adams, Alfie Potter, Lawson D’Ath and Marc Richards early on, with the former excelling on either flank.
Yet Northampton’s opener midway through the half came from the unlikely source of Jason Taylor, who scored his first goal for the Cobblers with an unstoppable dipping volley from 20 yards.
Centre-back Ryan Creswell made it two eight minutes before the break, heading home an Adams free-kick at the far post, and prompting Tisdale to change his side’s shape at the interval.
The visitors improved after the break, with Tom Nichols missing two decent chances, and substitute Will Hoskins being denied by a fine Adam Smith stop. But their efforts were to no avail, with Northampton skipper Marc Richards converting Ricky Holmes’ low cross a minute from time.
But Grecians boss Tisdale was determined not to be too despondent after a first defeat of the new campaign.
“I don’t think we were that far away, but I think we were beaten by the more effective team,” he said.
“I can’t complain about the result.
“We arguably could have done one or two things differently that could have changed the course of the game, but we didn’t.”
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