Oxford United v Northampton Town
SKY BET LEAGUE 2
Tuesday February 16th, 7.45pm
OXFORD UNITED 0
NORTHAMPTON TOWN 1
Marc Richards 59 pen
Attendance: 9,559 (1,943 Cobblers fans)
Oxford: Benji Buchel, Joe Skarz, Kemar Roofe, Johnny Mullins, Jake Wright (sub Chey Dunkley 75), Liam Sercombe, Danny Hylton (sub Callum O'Dowda 73), Jonjoe Kenny, John Lundstram, Chris Maguire (sub Zeli Ismail 85), Jordan Bowery.
Subs not used: Sam Slocombe, Alex MacDonald, Josh Ruffels, Sam Long
Cobblers: Adam Smith, Brendan Moloney, Zander Diamond, Rod McDonald, David Buchanan, John-Joe O’Toole, Danny Rose, Ricky Holmes (sub Sam Hoskins 75), Lawson D’Ath, Marc Richards (sub Lee Martin 67), James Collins (sub Jason Taylor 90)
Subs not used: Ryan Clarke, Luke Prosser, Ryan Cresswell, Nicky Adams
Referee: Mr K Hill
Oxford: Chris Maguire (43), Danny Hylton (45), Johnny Mullins (45)
Cobblers: Danny Rose (45, 3rd of the season), John-Joe O'Toole (45, 9th), Rod McDonald (74, 2nd), Lee Martin (90, 6th)
10 cautions on or before 12 March; 2 match suspension
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.
Chris Wilder made one change to the side for Tuesday night’s top of the table clash with Oxford United at the Kassam Stadium with Lawson D’Ath replacing Lee Martin. Danny Rose, released by Oxford at the end of the January transfer window, kept his place in midfield with Joel Byrom having failed to recover from a neck injury picked up in the warm-up before the game at Leyton Orient.
There was a vibrant atmosphere around the ground as the game got underway with the Cobblers backed by just under 2,000 fans who were having no problems making themselves heard over their Oxford counterparts.
On the pitch an early Danny Hylton header was comfortably saved by Adam Smith as the U’s looked to draw first blood.
Jordan Bowery spurned a chance presented to him by Kemar Roofe on 19 minutes before James Collins saw a shot saved by Benji Buchel.
Collins went close following a Zander Diamond knock back while a David Buchannan block denied Roofe as both teams continued to play at a high tempo.
Buchel did well to tip over a powerful header from Marc Richards on 44 minutes to ensure the first half ended goalless.
Danny Rose had a header saved before John-Joe O’Toole shot against the cross bar as the Cobblers started the second half on top.
As the game neared the hour mark the Cobblers were awarded a penalty following a handball decision against Johnny Mullins.
Marc Richards stepped up to confidently smash the ball home from 12-yards to put Chris Wilder’s side in front.
Chris Maguire struck the post from 25-yards as Oxford went close to an equaliser. Lee Martin then came on for Richards in the Cobblers first change.
With the home side pushing forward Liam Sercombe fluffed his lines from 10-yards and Buchanan made an important interception to deny Bowery.
Sam Hoskins fired a shot into the side netting before the Cobblers comfortably came through five minutes of stoppage time to claim the three points to move further clear at the top of Sky Bet League 2.
OXFORD MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (1) 4
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (3) 7
CORNERS: (2) 7
FOULS: (9) 15
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (0) 3
COBBLERS MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (3) 6
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (3) 6
CORNERS: (4) 7
FOULS: (6) 11
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (0) 0
The above stats are recorded by club staff. The stats shown elsewhere on this page are recorded by Opta