SKY BET LEAGUE 2
Saturday October 26th, 3.00pm
PTS Academy Stadium
NORTHAMPTON TOWN 2
Harry Smith 26, 45
CAMBRIDGE UNITED 0
Attendance: 5,221 (694 away supporters)
Cobblers: David Cornell, Paul Anderson (sub Billy Waters 58), Charlie Goode, Scott Wharton, Jordan Turnbull, Scott Pollock, Alan McCormack (sub Chris Lines 69), Shaun McWilliams, Nicky Adams, Sam Hoskins, Harry Smith (sub Andy Williams 73)
Subs not used: Andrew Fisher, Reece Hall-Johnson, Vadaine Oliver, Michael Harriman
Cambridge: Dimitar Mitov, Kyle Knoyle, George Taft, Luke Hannant, Harrison Dunk, Harry Darling, Marc Richards (sub Liam O'Neil 86), Reggie Lambe, Sam Smith (sub Andrew Dallas 78), Paul Lewis, Elliott Ward (sub Harvey Knibbs 71)
Subs not used: Greg Taylor, Louis John, Leon Davies, Callum Burton
Referee: Graham Salisbury
Cobblers: Sam Hoskins (45, 4th of the season), Alan McCormack (51, 4th)
Cambridge: Reggie Lambe (45)
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
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.
Keith Curle was targeting a third win in a week as Cambridge United, managed by former Cobblers boss Colin Calderwood, came to the PTS Academy Stadium. Striker Marc Richards, who had two spells with Town, was another familiar face for the U’s.
Alan McCormack, back from illness, was one of three changes to the Cobblers side that made the long trip to Carlisle in midweek with Harry Smith and Paul Anderson also included from the start.
With this being the last home game before Remembrance Sunday in November there was a short period of silence prior to kick-off.
On a wet and windy afternoon Cambridge started brightly, an alert David Cornell tipping over a dangerous early cross from Luke Hannant and Charlie Goode making a vital interception. It was the Cobblers though who went close to breaking the deadlock on 18 minutes, Dimitar Mitov making a fine save to keep out a Scott Wharton header. Cambridge then had a couple of chances from set pieces, Cornell saving a deflected effort from Richards and Elliott Ward heading wide.
Harry Smith kept his composure to put the Cobblers in front on 26 minutes, latching on to a ball over the top from Nicky Adams before beating Mitov with a cool finish into the corner. Smith was nearly in for a second soon after but on a skiddy surface the pass from Shaun McWilliams just skipped away from the frontman.
In first half stoppage time Harry Smith did have a second goal, his shot from a tight angle deflected in off U’s defender George Taft. There was still time for Reggie Lambe and Sam Hoskins to pick up yellow cards following a strong challenge by the Cambridge player but it was the Cobblers who had a two goal lead at the break.
Cambridge were struggling to handle Smith and ten minutes into the second half the striker was in again, forcing Mitov into a save.
Richards was denied by a superb save from Cornell as the U’s enjoyed a period of pressure, searching for a goal to get them back into the contest.
Harry Smith received a standing ovation as he made way for Andy Williams in the Cobblers final change, Billy Waters and Chris Lines having already come on for Anderson and McCormack respectively. Williams then fired wide before Richards left the field to warm applause from the home fans.
Harvey Knibbs passed up a good chance to pull a goal back for the U’s in stoppage time and although the second half hadn’t quite reached the heights of the first for the Cobblers, three points were assured making it a terrific week for Keith Curle’s side with three wins on the bounce.
COBBLERS MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (3) 4
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (4) 5
CORNERS: (3) 5
FOULS: (8) 22
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (1) 2
CAMBRIDGE MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (1) 2
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (2) 5
CORNERS: (5) 8
FOULS: (8) 13
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (0) 0
SCRATCH CARD GOAL TIMES: 25:26, ADTM1