Clarke Carlisle says he is happy for Kelvin Langmead to continue as the Cobblers captain, and feels his central defensive partner has made great strides in the role in his absence.
Carlisle led the side out for every one of his 18 appearances for the club during his first loan spell last season and his leadership qualities were a key feature of the team’s successful fight against relegation.
But during his second spell with the club, Langmead – who has not missed a minute of first-team action so far this season - will stay on as the captain.
“Just from that first game I can see how Kelvin has stepped up to the mantle of having the captaincy,” he said.
“He’s far more vocal and he’s really stepped into those boots. I’m not here to battle for leadership I just hope I can contribute to what there is here already.
“It’s a well-organised and well-oiled machine and I just want to add to that. There is a lot of respect in the camp all round, from one man to the next, and that’s what successful teams have.
“Hopefully I can bring experience and a knowledge of managing matches, but that’s not to say the guys here aren’t doing that already.”
Carlisle was a big presence in a number of important games towards the back end of last season and helped transfer a defence that was leaking goals into one capable of keeping clean sheets on a regular basis.
His most memorable afternoon was the one at Edgar Street on which the team secured the 0-0 draw that confirmed their stay in the Football League.
“When the game at Hereford ended it was just a feeling of relief of the highest order,” he said.
“We had our backs to the wall for a lot of that game, it was like the Alamo, and there was a real sense of relief afterwards that we’d got the job done.
“We’d achieved it. We’d maintained position and at that time I expected it to be very different this season, which it was.”