Focused Richards predicts exciting times are ahead for Cobblers

Marc Richards and Nicky Adams celebrate the former's goal on Saturday. Pictures by Sharon Lucey
Marc Richards and Nicky Adams celebrate the former's goal on Saturday. Pictures by Sharon Lucey

Marc Richards believes exciting times could be ahead for Northampton Town after the Cobblers skipper insisted his focus remains firmly on matters on the pitch.

While issues off the field continue to plague any progress made on it, Richards reckons this could be a vintage season for the Cobblers, especially with the recent additions of midfielder Nicky Adams and goalkeeper Adam Smith who have starred since signing for the club in the summer.

Both were influential in Saturday’s win over Wycombe Wanderers at Adams Park, particularly Adams who was at the heart of a free-flowing, attacking Northampton performance.

Richards also stood out as he netted the first of Cobblers’ three goals, lashing home a superb free-kick, while Lawson D’Ath and Shaun Brisley were also on the score sheet in a victory that stretches Northampton’s unbeaten run to five games, and Richards was in upbeat mood afterwards.

He said: “The problems behind the scenes are nothing to do with us. We want to fully concentrate on the pitch and the matches we’re playing, and if you look at the squad, it’s exciting times.

“We’ve got players on the bench and in the stands who are injured to come back and fight for place and it makes everyone want to grab hold of the shirt even more and if we can keep that team spirit it’ll stand us in good stead.

Richards' free-kick hits the back of the net

Richards' free-kick hits the back of the net

“Nicky Adams has been a revelation since he came into the club. I think the stats show he’s got seven assists and if he carries on that form he’ll have proved his worth.

“He’s signed a three-year contract here and it’s a fantastic scoop for the club and he’s showing now why he’s been so highly rated at other clubs he’s been at.

“And it’s not just Nicky, Lawson’s been getting on the end of crosses and we need other bodies in the box too, not just me or Sam (Hoskins) or Dominic (Calvert-Lewin), we need midfielders on the end of crosses.

“Smudge (Adam Smith) also made a couple of good saves again on Saturday. He’s proving his worth and he’s a good player. The gaffer’s brought him and he’s been fantastic and the four at the back showed their worth as well.”

“We want to fully concentrate on the pitch and the matches we’re playing, and if you look at the squad, it’s exciting times”

Marc Richards

Richards felt his side were full value for their win on Saturday after they came from a goal down to win 3-2.

The 33-year-old added: “It was a well deserved win. I thought we put in a sterling performance.

“First half we counter-attacked really well and defended really well. It was a sloppy goal initially but we’ve shown good character to come back and score three goals against a very good team.

“They’ve only conceded five goals all season before Saturday so for us to score three goals just shows what an attacking threat we are.”

Adam Smith made two crucial saves in the first half against Wycombe

Adam Smith made two crucial saves in the first half against Wycombe

On his goal, Richards continued: “We worked on the free-kick during training in the week. Knilly (Alan Knill) likes to come up with all sorts of different corners and free-kicks and throw-ins and we are creating chances from them so it shows we’re doing something right.”