Page sees plenty of positives after Cobblers notch victory in pre-season opener

Rob Page watches his team in action for the first time. Picture: Kirsty Edmonds
Rob Page watches his team in action for the first time. Picture: Kirsty Edmonds

Northampton manager Rob Page was delighted to kick-start his tenure with an overwhelming 3-0 victory against Northampton Sileby Rangers following Saturday’s one-sided pre-season opener at Fernie Fields.

Alex Revell, playing his first game for the club since joining last month, got the ball rolling on just nine minutes and the Cobblers proceeded to dominate with John-Joe O’Toole and David Buchanan adding second-half goals.

The visitors could have doubled their tally given the number of chances they created but victory was never in doubt, and Page felt it was the ideal way to begin his time in charge of the club.

“There will always be things we need to work on but that was a fantastic start for the lads,” he said afterwards.

“We mixed it up a bit in terms of playing two different formations and two different teams just to give them that gradual increase in minutes.

“I thought their attitude was spot on today and it was great to come to a place like this where the pitch is absolutely fantastic and it gives something back to the local community so it’s been a good day.”

Page took the opportunity to give his whole squad a run out, including new signings Jak McCourt, Raheem Hanley, Gabriel Zakuani, Aaron Phillips, David Cornell and Revell, plus hand game time for academy youngsters Jamie Hall, Joe Iaciofano and goalkeeper James Goff.

Page added: “Young Sam (Hoskins) did very well up top and did everything but score and I think it’s credit to the academy at the minute because all the kids they’re bringing up to us are looking lively and bright.

“Raheem showed pace outside and young Jamie showed potential at left-back. Jak was tidy in the middle of the park and I know he can pass so all in all it was very pleasing.

“I was pleased to see Revell get off the mark and and we also kept a clean sheet. Overall it’s been a very productive day.”

The only player to miss out was goalkeeper Adam Smith who picked up a minor ankle injury in training this week, with Page adding: “It’s nothing to worry about at all. He was fit to play but I don’t see the point taking chances when there’s no need.

“It’s the first game so we’ll make sure he’s 100 per cent for next week because he’ll train on Monday.”