On Sunday, the Northampton Town Ladies faced second place Oadby & Wigston in what was a vitally important fixture in the promotion race. Only 3 points separated the two sides before kick off but Oadby had a game in hand as the two teams battled for the one promotion place.
Oadby had held the upper hand in the previous meetings following a 1-0 win against Cobblers in March and they came back twice in the 2-2 draw in January.
The tension was evident as the match started very evenly with both sides trying to dominate possession. The Cobblers started to show some dominance with their attacking formation but couldn’t create a clear chance. Oadby then responded, applying pressure but Cobblers stood strong.
Around the 35-minute mark, the deadlock was broken when a penalty was awarded to Northampton for a handball in the box. Top league goal scorer, Emma Dunmore stepped up to put the Cobblers ahead 1-0.
Going into the second half a goal ahead, the Cobblers were confident. A change in tactics saw Abbie Reboul move to the left wing and the change was effective immediately. Cesca Partridge held the ball up well and then spread the play out wide to Reboul. She took on the Oadby right back and confidently slotted the ball beyond the keeper to put the Cobblers 2-0 ahead and in full control of the game.
The Cobblers started to create more clear chances which saw the Oadby keeper make some great saves to keep her side in the game. But the relentness nature of Northampton Town's play was soon rewarded when Reboul’s cross found Dunmore in the area. She beat her marker and volleyed the ball into the back of the net to put the Cobblers 3-0 ahead.
Oadby created some chances towards the end of the match forcing the Cobblers keeper, Katie Mclean, into some important saves. The match finished 3-0 which secured the Cobblers 7th clean sheet of the season and put them six points clear at the top of the table.
There was great support once again from the Cobblers fans who made the trip to Oadby. The Cobblers have 2 remaining games at home to Lutterworth (Sunday 21st April) and then away to Thrapston on Sunday 5th May. Good luck girls, finish the job and secure that promotion!