Boss Page backing Cobblers' experience to see them through FA Cup test

Rob Page is in no doubt that he has the experienced players in his squad to ensure the Cobblers' attitude is 100 per cent right for Tuesday night's FA Cup second round clash at non-League Stourbridge (ko 7.45pm).

Monday, 12th December 2016, 8:13 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th December 2016, 1:37 pm
EXPERIENCED - Cobblers midfielder Matt Taylor

Town travel to the compact War Memorial Ground knowing their hosts will be desperate to claim what will be a memorable giant-killing for them.

The Cobblers are going to have to be ready for a physical battle.

They are going to have to be ready to roll their sleeves up and match the Stourbridge players stride for stride, tackle for tackle, and Page is certain his players will be up for the fight - thanks to the string of strong characters in the dressing room.

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"Revs, Rico, Matty Taylor, Buchs, Lewin Nyatanga, Gaby Zakuani, there is enough experience in that team to make sure the team goes out with the right attitude," said the Cobblers boss.

"They have all been involved in FA Cup games like this, even some of the younger players have, so they know they can't just expect to turn up and get it all their own way.

"There are going to be spells in the game where Stourbridge are going to try and impose themselves on us, and we have to be ready for that and make sure we stand up and be counted."

Mid-table in Sky Bet League One, the Cobblers are expected to win and set up a trip to Wycombe Wanderers in the third round, but Stourbridge are a team on a high.


They haven't lost since the end of October and are on a nine-match unbeaten run, winning their past five.

Saturday saw them see off Ashton United 2-0 to maintain their interest in the promotion race in the Evo-Stik Northern League Premier Division, and they will be confident they can shock the Cobblers.

Page watched Stourbridge in their first round replay win over Whitehawk, and has had them watched in their recent games as well, and he will have his players well prepared for what is a step into the unknown.

Asked what the Cobblers can expect to come up against, Page said: "I can't tell you how they are going to play, because I can't tell you how their manager is thinking in terms of how we set up.

"But I do know they can score goals, we have seen that in recent weeks.

"I watched them in the first round of the FA Cup, and they scored three that night and were very good.

"So we know they have goals in them, they have pace up top and they have a player out wide that can deliver crosses and is very good running with the ball, so we have to nullify that threat.

"But like I said, it is about us, and if we can recreate the performance from Saturday then we will be in for a good night."

The Cobblers are expected to field a full-strength side for the trip to the west midlands, although John-Joe O'Toole is suspended, and Brendan Moloney, JJ Hooper and Zander Diamond are all sidelined through injury.