Boss Brady relishing Cambridge United Cup test

Jon Brady believes Saturday's FA Cup first round clash with Cambridge United is a great chance to test just how far his new-look Cobblers team has come this season.

By Jeremy Casey
Friday, 5th November 2021, 1:26 pm
Updated Friday, 5th November 2021, 1:28 pm
Cobblers boss Jon Brady
Cobblers boss Jon Brady

Town are in the middle of a four-match winning streak in Sky Bet League Two, and currently sit in third place in the table, just four points off leaders Forest Green Rovers.

Cambridge, who were promoted from league two last season, have enjoyed an excellent start to life in at the higher level, and currently sit 10th in the table after claiming two wins in a row this week.

Things seem to be coming together for Brady and his team, having endured a mixed start to the season after a squad overhaul in the summer following relegation in April.

The Town boss knows his team is still developing and improving, but feels the clash with Cambridge will be a good barometer of where they are currently at.

"Cambridge are a very well organised side," said Brady. "They have kept the bulk of the squad that went up last season, so they know their roles and responsibilities inside and out.

"They are very organised and they have players in the offensive third that can really hurt you.

"They have shown that they can compete in league one, but we are also showing we are very competitive in our league.

"I think our players are really looking forward to the opportunity of testing themselves against a league one side.

"That will then allow us to see how far we have come with our new team."

Brady is a former Cambridge United player, having spent 18 months at the Abbey Stadium in the mid-2000s, making 53 appearances and scoring four goals.

Indeed, the whole management team at the Cobblers have links with the Us.

Assistant manager Colin Calderwood managed Cambridge between December 2018 and January, 2020, and Marc Richards also having played in the amber and black for six months at the end of his career.

"Marc and I both played for Cambridge, and I thoroughly enjoyed my time there at a fantastic football club," said the Cobblers boss.

"Colin has obviously managed them as well, so we all have a connection.

"But we live and breathe in this town and our job is to do everything we can to be the best we can in the league, and that won't come into consideration come kick-off.

"It is about us playing to the absolute best we can and progressing through to the next round.

"We do fancy our chances, but likewise Cambridge will.

"They have had an upturn in form, but if you talk about league positions at the moment we are probably the underdogs, and there is nothing better than being the underdog!"