Chris Wilder praised his Cobblers squad for their playing ‘like men’ at Torquay as a disastrous day ended with a vital victory.
The windscreen wipers on the team bus broke while it was on the M5 on the way to the game, leading to an emergency stop on the hard shoulder and a two-and-a-half hour delay at Strensham Services.
Despite the setbacks and concerns about whether the pitch would be playable, Wilder’s side recorded a priceless 2-1 win via an Emile Sinclair double.
It reduces the gap between Northampton and Torquay to three points and has injected a fresh belief into both the squad and the supporters that their Football League status can be secured.
“I’m delighted, we asked for a man performance and we got one,” he said.
“They (Torquay) were absolutely desperate to get this game on because they probably saw us as a target and as an easy three points.
“I’m proud of the performance. They all put their bodies on the line and we knew we would need blocks, we would need to stop crosses and we’d need everyone to leave it out on the pitch.
“Everyone has done that and you get your rewards; our reward is three big points.”
Wilder was delighted not just for his team and the 69 supporters who travelled to watch them but also for his assistant Alan Knill.
Knill was sacked by Torquay in January and received some ‘unnecessary’ comments from some of the Plainmoor supporters.
“I’m delighted for Alan,” he said. “He suffered here and he got a little bit of stick tonight and I don’t think that was deserved.
“And I’m delighted for the players and for the travelling supporters.”