Tuesday November 7th, 7.45pm
NORTHAMPTON TOWN 3
Sam Foley 72
Lewis McGugan 83
Ash Taylor 90
SOUTHAMPTON UNDER 21S 3
Jake Hesketh 6, 51
Tyreke Johnson 59
Attendance: 1,118 (53 away supporters)
Cobblers: David Cornell, Brendan Moloney, Ash Taylor, Ryan McGivern, George Smith, Dean Bowditch, Yaser Kasim (sub Lewis McGugan 69), Sam Foley, Raheem Hanley (sub Chris Long 64), Matt Crooks (sub Matt Grimes 63) Marc Richards
Subs not used: Luke Coddington, Prudence Anaele (academy), James Gillard (academy), Sean Whaler (academy)
Southampton: Alex McCarthy, Will Wood, Alfie Jones, Jake Hesketh (sub Armani Little 75), Yan Valery, Ollie Cook, Tyreke Johnson, Callum Slattery, Aaron O’Driscoll, Jonathan Afolabi, Nathan Tella (sub Michael Obafemi 62)
Subs not used: Richard Bakary, Tom O’Connor, Ben Rowthorn, Jack Rose, Harlem Hale
Referee: Mr Brett Huxtable
Cobblers: Matt Grimes (75)
Southampton: Jake Hesketh (64)
Ryan McGivern made his Cobblers debut as Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink made nine changes for the Checkatrade Trophy tie against Southampton under 21s. Brendan Moloney and Matt Crooks returned from injury while three players from the club’s Academy, Prudence Anaele, James Gillard and Sean Whaler, were named on the bench. Billy Waters was suspended having been booked in the previous two group games.
With all four teams still able to qualify for the knockout stages, a draw would be enough for the Cobblers to progress to the last 32.
Southampton struck early on a damp night at Sixfields, Jake Hesketh with a neat finish after using his pace to get in behind the Cobblers defence.
Sam Foley flashed a shot just wide from 25-yards and Matt Crooks went close with a flick as the Cobblers looked to respond to falling behind. Crooks then also had a shot from distance that went agonisingly wide after a neat turn on the edge of the area.
Jake Hesketh doubled the Saints lead on 51 minutes, Jonathan Afolabi playing in the midfielder for his second cool finish of the night.
Southampton then increased their lead just before the hour mark, Tyreke Johnson with a shot into the bottom corner.
Matt Grimes replaced Crooks in the Cobblers first change with Chris Long then coming on for Raheem Hanley. Lewis McGugan for Yaser Kasim completed the Cobblers changes midway through the second half.
Sam Foley pulled a goal back on 72 minutes, Chris Long providing the cross for Foley to connect with on the half-volley. The goal lifted the home side and Marc Richards showed great improvisation to almost make it 2-3, his chip over the keeper going just wide.
The Cobblers were right back in it on 83 minutes, Lewis McGugan with an unstoppable volley from the edge of the area to set up a grandstand finale.
Five minutes into stoppage time the Cobblers equalised through Ash Taylor, his header sealing the draw the Cobblers needed to progress to the knockout stages of the competition, setting up the Cobblers third penalty shoot-out of the group stage in the process.
PENALTIES (ABBA system)
Matt Grimes – scored 1-0
Armani Little – scored 1-1
Tyreke Johnson – saved 1-1
Marc Richards – scored 2-1
Chris Long – scored 3-1
Jonathan Afolabi – scored 3-2
Ollie Cook – missed 3-2
Ryan McGivern – woodwork 3-2
Lewis McGugan – scored 4-2
Cobblers win 4-2 on penalties (Cobblers 2 points, Southampton U21s 1 point)
The Cobblers finish second in the group and progress to knockout stages.
COBBLERS MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (0) 3
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (7) 10
CORNERS: (3) 5
FOULS: (6) 13
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (2) 3
SOUTHAMPTON MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (4) 6
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (0) 1
CORNERS: (1) 2
FOULS: (6) 10
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (0) 0