Aidy Boothroyd said the Cobblers were the authors of their own misfortune as they threw away a two-goal lead to lose at home to Cheltenham Town.
Adebayo Akinfenwa scored for the 14th time this season and a Billy Jones own goal put Town in the box seat at Sixfields after just 12 minutes.
But Darren Carter and Chris Zebroski scored twice in quick succession to restore parity before Darryl Duffy settled the contest with a clinical strike at the end of a swift counter-attack.
Boothroyd was unhappy to concede the game’s decisive goal while his team were in an attacking position, and felt that was a common theme during the match.
“We started very well and got on the front foot,” said the manager, whose team now lie 12th in npower League Two, four points outside the play-off places.
“We created lots of chances and put them under pressure. But towards the end of the first half we stopped doing all those good things and allowed Cheltenham back into it.
“We didn’t expect them to come back but they did and you have to give credit to Cheltenham for that. We seemed to bring out the best in them.
“We’re always going to score goals but we shot ourselves in the foot three times, we’ve conceded three goals from losing possession in the attacking areas. We attack as a team and defend as a team but we didn’t do that today.
“We got exactly what we deserved because we didn’t maintain our momentum for the rest of the game after such a good start.”