Chesterfield boss Paul Cook has warned his players that if they don’t ‘stand up’ to the Cobblers’ phsyically, then they will lose today’s npower League Two clash between the sides at the Proact Stadium this afternoon (Sat, ko 3pm).
As seems to be the case every time an opposing manager talks about Northampton, Cook has highlighted the Cobblers’ supposed direct style of play and their physical strength.
And the Chesterfield boss is anticipating a difficult afternoon for his players against Adebayo Akinfenwa, Clive Platt and co.
“We know all about Northampton,” said Cook. “We know the test we’ve got. We’re under no illusions about how difficult the game is going to be.
“It’ll be two contrasts in styles of football, and who’s right who’s wrong is irrelevant.
“We want to play an open, passing game and we want to press the ball all over the pitch. These are the messages that players have been getting daily.
“Sometimes when teams change from week to week, through injuries and suspensions, different stuff, we lose track of what we’re trying to do and we’ve done that a little bit lately.
“We want to get back to what we’re good at and it’s very important that whoever gets selected, those messages have got across.
“We know the threat of Northampton, and if we don’t stand up then we won’t win the game.”
The two sides drew 0-0 when the met at Sixfields earlier in the season, with the Spireites then under the caretaker charge of Tommy Wright, who is now Cook’s assistant.
Chesterfield are in the middle of a sticky run of form, having won just one of their past six games.
They have lost their two most recent fixtures, 1-0 at Cook’s former club Accrington and 2-1 at Wycombe Wanderers, and this week announced the departure of two attacking players.
Former Kettering Town man Craig Westcarr, who has been on loan at Walsall, was released from his contract on Wednesday, and former Arsenal, West Ham and Fulham forward Luis Boa Morte left on Thursday.
The 35-year-old was released after the expiry of his short-term contract at the club.
Cook said: “Luis has been a model professional during his time with us and we thank him for his efforts, but we have decided against extending his stay.”
You can follow all the action from today’s game on the Chron’s Saturday Sports Centre on Twitter.
Follow @chronsport and join in and keep up to date with all the sporting news from 2pm onwards.