Although the margin of victory flattered Leyton Orient, the better side certainly won at Sixfields on Wednesday night on an evening of missed opportunities for the Cobblers.
Louis Moult missed a great opportunity to put Town in front in the first half, although in his defence Orient goalkeeper Jamie Jones did superbly to make an early decision and keep the attempt out.
The club and their supporters miss the opportunity of a genuine tilt at a trip to Wembley; unlike the two other cup competitions the team enters, Northampton have a realistic chance of reaching the final of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.
Now they won’t.
The players selected for the game, notably in midfield, missed the opportunity to stake a claim to play in the league game against Cheltenham on Saturday - it is almost a certainty now that Chris Hackett, Adebayo Akinfenwa and Lewis Hornby will be restored for the weekend.
Hackett and Akinfenwa did not play because they were on four bookings and another yellow card would have ruled them out of Saturday.
So it was a sensible policy to leave them out (although the same can not exactly be said of Hornby, who Boothroyd admits was “very hard done by” to be benched) because of the two games this week, the Cheltenham one is the higher priority.
Not his greatest day at the office, and will feel he could have done better with Orient’s second goal ...6
Broke play up well on his side and overlapped to good effect in one of his best outings for the club ...7
The throw created one or two problems and he was fine - if a little exposed at times - in general play ...6
Not the presence he is capable of being in the penalty boxes ...6
Unfortunate to concede the penalty but was given a torrid time, especially in the second half, by Odubajo ...6
Excellent volley was as good as it got for Robinson, who played with typical gusto ...6
Failed to stake a claim for the weekend and looks unlikely to dislodge Hornby in the near future ...5
Horrible loss of possession in the build-up to second goal but was steady enough otherwise ...6
A mixed evening that had a little bit of everything and he did well to keep a lid on his emotions ...6
Will rue his missed chance, which could have change the game and the player’s own evening ...5
Retained possession with virtually every touch in another first-rate performance ...7
ADEBAYO AKINFENWA (for Moult, 69mins)
The emphasis went out of the game almost as soon as he came on, because Orient scored a second ...6
CHRIS HACKETT (for Robinson, 69mins)
Tried to get things going but the game was gone by the time he got into his flow ...6
HENOC MUKENDI (for Demontagnac, 78mins)
Not used: Snedker, Hornby