Cobblers goalkeeper Steve Arnold could be facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines if the hamstring injury he suffered at Port Vale on Saturday is as bad as first feared.
The summer signing from Shrewsbury was a surprise starter at Vale Park after David Cornell, number one choice for the opening game of the season against Walsall, was dropped to the bench by Keith Curle.
But Arnold's debut was cut short with 65 minutes on the clock. Going down to make a save from Tom Pope - who had been flagged offside seconds earlier - the 29-year-old clutched his hamstring in agony as he went to stand up.
He was visibly distraught when leaving the field, replaced by Cornell, and now seems set to miss the coming weeks should further assessment confirm the worst.
"I think it's a hamstring," said Curle afterwards. "We'll assess the severity of it on Sunday or Monday morning and we'll get it iced up and get it settled down.
"I think the linesman did the right thing. He put his flag up straightaway so there's no complaints there that it was delayed.
"He's gone to make the block and when he went to stand up afterwards he just felt something pop."
Charlie Goode was hobbling towards the end of the game at Vale Park but Curle played down any concerns over his skipper, adding: "Charlie's fine. He had a bit of a sore knee but that's calmed down now and Nacho (physio) says it's calmed down a little bit."
Midfielder Alan McCormack missed Saturday's game with the hamstring problem he picked up against Walsall last weekend.
Providing an update on the 35-year-old, Curle said: "It's not as bad as what we first thought. We trust the medical team and he'll be on his return to training protocol.
"It's difficult to put a time frame on it because he's now just getting into the healing period."