Brady says FA Cup is 'hugely important' for Cobblers and hopes two players will return for Barrow tie

‘The FA Cup is hugely important to us.’
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Cobblers boss Jon Brady insists the FA Cup is ‘hugely important’ to the club ahead of Saturday’s first round tie against Barrow at Sixfields (1.30pm kick-off).

Northampton’s recent record in the competition makes for miserable reading having lost their last three round one ties, two of which were against non-league opposition – Chesterfield 12 months ago and Oxford City in 2020/21. They were also beaten by Cambridge United after a replay in 2021/22.

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The visit of League Two Barrow to Sixfields this weekend presents Cobblers with an opportunity to reach the second round for the first time since 2019 – and for Brady to win his first FA Cup match in charge of the club. It would be the ideal way to bounce back after Tuesday’s heavy defeat at Derby.

Jon BradyJon Brady
Jon Brady

"We were nowhere near the levels we set ourselves on Tuesday and we were never in the game,” admitted Brady. “But we know we are better than that and we want a strong reaction against Barrow on Saturday.

"The FA Cup is hugely important to us. We’d love to go on a cup run and we’re at home this weekend and after the performance the other night, it’s important for all of us to bounce back and show our fans what we're all about.

"You have play what it’s front of you and you can’t get ahead of yourself. Players only get 10 or 12 opportunities in the FA Cup in their whole careers and every year an opportunity goes by to reach the third round and play the big boys.

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"Our full focus is on Barrow. I think they’ve only lost two of their last 10 and they have an excellent defensive record so they are very organised and a strong side and are always hugely competitive. We know it’s a tough challenge but if we’re at our best, we believe we can get a result.”

With fatigue potentially affecting some of his squad, Brady hopes to have one or two players back from injury this weekend.

"We are playing the same players every game,” he added. “Yes, it's an excuse, but there is fatigue because of the injury situation.

"I hope to have Louis and maybe Jack Sowerby back by the weekend, which would be a huge bonus, but they would only be able to play limited minutes. Jon Guthrie is probably another week or two off, probably more likely to be two weeks off, and then after the weekend we get Kieron Bowie back from suspension."