Wilder is emo­tional af­ter hard few days

The Football League Paper - - FA CUP FIRST ROUND - By Adam Dent

NORTHAMP­TON man­ager Chris Wilder made an emo­tional trib­ute to his play­ers and the club’s sup­port­ers af­ter they helped pro­duce an FA Cup shock.

In a week when the club’s ex­is­tence was called into doubt over financial prob­lems and the PFA stepped in to pay the wages, it was just the lift the club needed.

They de­servedly won the game thanks to firsthalf goals from Nicky Adams and Marc Richards in front of more than 2,000 trav­el­ling sup­port­ers.

Wilder said: “To see that many sup­port­ers was out­stand­ing and it made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end.

“You find out a lot about peo­ple in bad times. When you have to dig in as play­ers, staff and most im­por­tantly fans, they stand up.

“Ev­ery­one who has been here can be im­mensely proud of them­selves and we have thou­sands of oth­ers who could not get here.

“I have got mas­sive re­spect for sup­port­ers of teams who are not glam­our clubs. It would be easy for peo­ple in the Northamp­ton area to sup­port Chelsea or Manch­ester United and go to watch them play ev­ery five years be­cause this is not glam­orous.

“We work in foot­ball for days like this. Peo­ple were div­ing in, throw­ing them­selves into tack­les and that is what it is all about.”

Last sea­son it was Worces­ter City who sent Coven­try pack­ing, and they could have no com­plaints about the rights of Northamp­ton to move into the next round. They cre­ated more chances, looked stead­ier at the back and could well have added to their lead late in the game when Coven­try pushed for­ward look­ing to save their blushes.

They made the per­fect start when, af­ter just five min­utes, the im­pres­sive Adams saw his crossed free-kick evade ev­ery­one in the box and beat goal­keeper Lee Burge.

But they failed to hold on to the lead and five min­utes later Ja­cob Mur­phy, who was Coven­try’s most dan­ger­ous player, was al­lowed to run at the defence and made it count with a an im­pres­sive low shot.

The Cobblers could eas­ily have buck­led, but they re­mained res­o­lute and, seven min­utes, later re­gained their lead when skip­per Richards headed in a cross from Law­son D’Ath.

Coven­try boss Tony Mow­bray said: “It is very dis­ap­point­ing – we wanted to progress and we haven’t. I don’t want to make ex­cuses as we had a rea­son­ably strong side out.

“Ul­ti­mately our in­abil­ity to de­fend crosses has cost us.

“They did not cause us many prob­lems about from their abil­ity to put the ball into our box, and our in­abil­ity to de­fend those crosses.

“I don’t think the goals would have gone in if we had had a dom­i­nant cen­tre half, who wants to head the ball, play­ing in the mid­dle of our defence.”

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