SKY BET LEAGUE 1
Saturday March 25th, 3.00pm
NORTHAMPTON TOWN 0
OXFORD UNITED 0
Attendance: 7,434 (1,399 away fans)
Cobblers: Adam Smith, Aaron Phillips (sub Brendan Moloney 74), David Buchanan, Zander Diamond, Lewin Nyatanga, Jak McCourt (sub Gregg Wylde 62), Matt Taylor, Paul Anderson, Keshi Anderson (sub Hiram Boateng 55), Marc Richards, Michael Smith
Subs not used: Rod McDonald, Harry Beautyman, Shaun McWilliams, David Cornell
Oxford: Simon Eastwood, John Lundstram, Curtis Nelson, Antonio Martinez (sub Kane Hemmings 55), Liam Sercombe, Conor McAlney (sub Rob Hall 70), Josh Ruffles (sub Joe Skarz 84), Phil Edwards, Joe Rothwell, Marvin Johnson, Chey Dunkley
Subs not used: Christian Ribeiro, Sam Long, Charlie Raglan, Jack Stevens
Referee: Michael Jones
Cobblers: Jak McCourt (55, 6th of the season), Paul Anderson (77, 3rd)
Oxford: John Lundstram (6), Antonio Martinez (40), Simon Eastwood (52)
15 cautions at any time in season; 3 match suspension
Sendings off: 2 cautions in one game; 1 match suspension but cautions do not count towards above totals. Other sendings off; 1 or 3 match suspension. Extra match ban for additional sendings off.
Cobblers boss Justin Edinburgh was dealt a double injury blow ahead of Oxford’s visit with both John-Joe O’Toole (groin) and Luke Williams (hamstring) unavailable for selection. Andersons Paul and Keshi came into the side while Shaun McWilliams, having been recalled from a loan spell at King’s Lynn, was named on the bench.
Prior to kick-off there was an impeccably observed period of silence to remember the victims of the terrorist attack in Westminster.
Keshi Anderson shot straight at Simon Eastwood after breaking from midfield early on while from a David Buchanan cross, Marc Richards went close with a header. Zander Diamond headed over from a Matt Taylor corner as the Cobblers continued to create the game’s better openings.
Conor McAlney curled a shot wide for Oxford before Adam Smith saved a rising effort from Phil Edwards towards the end of a goalless first half.
Michael Smith failed to connect with a Keshi Anderson cross at the start of the second half while at the other end Adam Smith did well to gather in a deflected cross from Edwards before denying Liam Sercombe from close range.
The Cobblers were awarded a penalty when Simon Eastwood brought down Paul Anderson but the Oxford keeper made amends by saving Matt Taylor’s subsequent spot-kick. Hiram Boateng then came on for Keshi Anderson as Crystal Palace loanee replaced Crystal Palace loanee.
Substitute Gregg Wylde did well to win a corner on 74 minutes, from which Diamond saw a header saved by Eastwood.
With just over ten minutes to go and the game still in the balance, Joe Rothwell curled a shot against the cross bar, Smith making a vital finger-tip save. Smith then made another terrific stop to deny Liam Sercombe at point blank range.
Marc Richards saw a shot blocked by Curtis Nelson as the game moved into stoppage time but the afternoon was to end goalless.
COBBLERS MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (2) 6
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (3) 7
CORNERS: (4) 6
FOULS: (5) 13
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (2) 3
OXFORD MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (1) 7
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (3) 4
CORNERS: (1) 7
FOULS: (8) 14
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (1) 1
The above stats are recorded by club staff. The stats shown elsewhere on this page are recorded by Opta