Cobblers boss Wilder hoping for home promotion due to ‘connection’ with fans

Players and fans have developed a close bond this season after the club's off-field difficulties brought everyone closer together (picture by Sharon Lucey)

Players and fans have developed a close bond this season after the club's off-field difficulties brought everyone closer together (picture by Sharon Lucey)

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Cobblers boss Chris Wilder is hoping his side seal their promotion to League One at Sixfields on Saturday due to the club’s close connection with the fans that has been evident throughout this season.

A strong bond has developed between Northampton’s players, staff and supporters in an initially troubling campaign, and many might argue the distressing off-field events prior to Christmas acted as the springboard for their current success.

A win over Bristol Rovers on Saturday would secure a top three spot and might also clinch the League Two title if Oxford United fail to win at Crawley Town.

Wilder said: “In a time when you look at Premier League teams and there’s no connection between them and the fans, especially those teams who don’t do very well.

“There’s no connection between players and supporters and it seems to have disappeared, but we’ve definitely got a connection here.

“Whether it’s through the situation that was placed upon us, the connection between us and the supporters is fantastic.

“We’ll be after another big effort from them, and they’ll be after another big effort from the players.”

It’s been a strange few weeks for Wilder and his players who know promotion is inevitable but haven’t quite got over the finishing line just yet.

“We just want to get it over the line as soon as possible,” added Wilder.

“We’ve put ourselves in a fantastic position.

“In the past 10 games we’ve picked up two points a game so we’re in good nick.

“The games have been knocking themselves down and now, as we’ve always wanted, we’re in a position to pick up a result and gain automatic promotion on Saturday.”