SKY BET LEAGUE 2
Saturday December 8th, 3.00pm
CRAWLEY TOWN 0
NORTHAMPTON TOWN 1
Kevin van Veen 53 pen
Attendance: 2,389 (499 Cobblers fans)
Crawley: Glenn Morris, Josh Payne (sub Ashley Nathaniel-George 78), Joe McNerney, Ollie Palmer, Dominic Poleon (sub Reece Grego-Cox 62), Luke Gambin, George Francomb, Joe Maguire, Dannie Bulman, Panutche Camara, Bondz N’Gala
Subs not used: Yusuf Mersin, Lewis Young, Josh Doherty, Romain Vincelot
Cobblers: David Cornell, Shay Facey, Ash Taylor, Jordan Turnbull, Aaron Pierre, David Buchanan, Shaun McWilliams, Sam Foley (sub Matt Crooks 57), Dean Bowditch, Sam Hoskins (sub Daniel Powell 81), Kevin van Veen (sub Junior Morias 81)
Subs not used: Lewis Ward, Jack Bridge, Billy Waters, Andy Williams
Referee: Craig Hicks
Crawley: Josh Payne (13), Panutche Camara (73)
Cobblers: David Buchanan (47, 1st of the season), David Cornell (70, 2nd)
5 cautions on or before 19 games; 1 match suspension
10 cautions on or before 37 games; 2 match suspension
15 cautions at any time in season; 3 match suspension
Crawley: Ollie Palmer (55)
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.
A fit again Matt Crooks was named on the bench as the Cobblers returned to league action with a trip to Crawley Town. Dean Bowditch, also only recently back from injury, was named in the starting line-up.
It was a wet and windy afternoon in West Sussex as the match got underway.
Kevin van Veen blasted wide following a well-worked free-kick before the woodwork denied Crawley the opening goal, Panutche Camara’s rising strike cannoning back off the cross bar.
Clear cut chances were at a premium but Bowditch went close with a half-volley and David Buchanan saw a shot blocked at close range after a dangerous ball in from Shay Facey.
The Cobblers were awarded a penalty six minutes into the second half when Aaron Pierre was bundled over in the area. Kevin van Veen stepped up and sent Glenn Morris the wrong way to open the scoring.
Tensions were heightened following the penalty decision and a few minutes later Ollie Palmer was shown a straight red card after a clash with Pierre, the assistant referee indicating an elbow on the Cobblers defender. Matt Crooks then replaced Sam Foley as Keith Curle made his first change of the afternoon.
Crawley substitute Reece Grego-Cox shot wide before a last-ditch challenge from Joe McNerney denied van Veen. David Cornell saved from Josh Payne and Camara fired just wide as Crawley enjoyed a brief spell of pressure in search of an equaliser.
A patient flowing move from the Cobblers nearly lead to a second goal but Facey’s shot was lacking in power allowing Morris to make the save. There was a moment of danger when Luke Gambin went racing clear for Crawley but Ash Taylor got back just in time to make the challenge inside the penalty area.
Morris made a good save to deny Daniel Powell from an acute angle as the game entered stoppage time with six additional minutes signalled by the fourth official.
The home side had a free-kick in a dangerous position in injury time but George Francomb shot over the bar, ensuring three well-earned points for the Cobblers.
CRAWLEY MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (0) 2
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (2) 5
CORNERS: (1) 1
FOULS: (8) 16
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (1) 1
COBBLERS MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (1) 5
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (4) 7
CORNERS: (4) 7
FOULS: (3) 8
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (1) 2