Midfielder Paul Anderson accepts the Cobblers players do ‘deserve stick at times’ from the club’s supporters, but he has promised the squad is ‘giving absolutely everything’.
With Town on a run of six defeats in seven games, sections of the club’s fans have at times been vocal in their criticism of manager Rob Page and the players.
The fans have been brilliant this season, and yes we have had a bad few weeks and everybody has the right, if they feel frustrated or annoyed at any point, to express that if they want, it is not a problem. We respect that and we do deserve stick at timesCobblers midfielder Paul Anderson
A low point was reached with the 1-0 FA Cup defeat at non-League Stourbridge a fortnight ago, and the travelling supporters made their feelings abundantly clear to the players at the end of that match.
Anderson admits the criticism that night was tough to take, but also deserved, and he wants the fans to know that the players are hurting just as much, if not more, than they are.
“It is tough, because the fans, staff and players are all in it together,” said Anderson when asked how the squad reacts to criticism from the stands.
“We want to win, and fans probably won’t believe this, but we want to win as much, if not more, than they do.
“It is our job, and we want to go out and win games.
“We want to get promoted, we want to be playing at the highest level possible.
“So it is frustrating from our point of view when fans think you are not giving your all, when you are.
“Every single player in our dressing room works their socks off for team and for the club.
“It is frustrating from our point of view, because we want to be respectful, we’re not allowed to say anything back, and we wouldn’t because we have a lot of respect for the fans.
“It is the fans that run the club, and we know we wouldn’t be here and we wouldn’t be playing football if it wasn’t for the fans.
“The lads have said it, and some have tweeted it, that we want to say thankyou for the support.
“The fans have been brilliant this season, and yes we have had a bad few weeks and everybody has the right, if they feel frustrated or annoyed at any point, to express that if they want, it is not a problem.
“We respect that and we do deserve stick at times.”
The two occasions this season where the supporters have shown the most frustration was the 3-0 derby defeat at Peteberorough, and that 1-0 loss to Stourbridge.
“The Peterborough game we lost 3-0, but it wasn’t a 3-0 game,” said Anderson. “But it is about results and it looked bad.
“The Stourbridge game we deserved every bit of criticism we got, and we hold our hands up because we know we didn’t perform that night.
“We can only apologise for that, and try to put things right.”
Last Saturday the Cobblers twice took the lead against Rochdale before losing 3-2, and that defeat has increased the pressure on Town as they travel to Oxford United on Boxing Day (ko 3pm).
Anderson believes ‘not too much is wrong’, that the team is capable of turning the corner at any time, and he is hoping it happens in the next two games at Oxford and then at Sheffield United on New Year’s Eve.
“I don’t think much was wrong with the Rochdale game,” said the 28-year-old.
“We conceded three goals, and we have conceded far too many goals of late, but we created opportunities, and it is making sure that when we go 1-0 or 2-1 up we hold on to that lead.
“We give absolutely everything we have got, every single week, for ourselves the staff and the fans.
“On Boxing Day, we want to go to Oxford, we all want to win and celebrate Christmas together and then hopefully can do the same on New Year’s Eve as well.
“Than all the fans can have a great time.”