Cobblers skipper Marc Richards is on course to be fit and firing for the Easter weekend double header against Newport County and Mansfield Town.
Town’s 18-goal top scorer has been out of action since February 16 due to an Achilles problem, but he is set to return to full training this week.
Manager Chris Wilder admits they ‘holding him back’ to ensure Richards is fully ready for a playing return, and although he may be in the squad for this Saturday’s trip to Stevenage, he will definitely be involved against Newport on Good Friday (March 25).
“Marc is doing well, and we are holding him back a little bit,” said Wilder.
“Hopefully he will resume full-time training towards the back end of this week, and maybe he will be involved on Saturday, which would be great news.
“But he will definitely be involved for the Friday and Monday (over Easter), as they are a couple of big games as well.
“Marc has been out a little while, and we have picked up some fantastic results.
“But having him in the group and being available, I should imagine it would make any team at this level, and possibly the level above, better, and when he does come back he will do that for us.”
Meanwhile, the Cobblers have arranged a reserve team friendly at Sky Bet League Two rivals Barnet on Tuesday in a bid to get some minutes into the legs of squad players that haven’t seen much action in recent weeks.
The likes of Ryan Cresswell, Jason Taylor, Danny Rose, Rod McDonald, Alfie Potter, Ryan Clarke, Josh Lelan, Sam Hoskins and Nicky Adams are set to feature in the match in north London.
“We train on Monday and then we have a reserve game on Tuesday, and that is really good for the lads that have not played a lot of football recently,” said Wilder.
“We are taking a team over to Barnet on Tuesday afternoon, it will be a pretty strong side, and we are healthy and looking forward.
“We will quickly get over the little disappointments we have had recently, and we are looking forward to the Stevenage game, hopefully with a full complement of players.”