Cobblers won’t use centre-back as emergency striker

Cobblers boss Chris Wilder
Cobblers boss Chris Wilder

Chris Wilder will not use a centre-back as a striker as a cure for the Cobblers’ lack of a physical target man and to replace the all-round abilities of injured top scorer Marc Richards.

The Northampton manager has been unable to recruit a centre-forward as a replacement for Richards, who will be out for at least another fortnight with an Achilles injury, although he has signed Diego De Girolamo and James Gray on loan.

It had been suggested that the team could start with Zander Diamond, who is a central defender but currently finds himself out of the team due to the form of Ryan Cresswell and Lee Collins at the heart of the back four.

But Wilder is reluctant to employ such a tactic because it contradicts the playing style he wants to implement for the team.

“I’m not a fan of that and I don’t think that’s going to do much for the confidence of the forwards that we have got at the club,” he said.

“Maybe you can do it late on in the game if you want to go a bit more direct but I don’t think I’d ever do it from the start.

We could use Zander (Diamond) in attack, but the way we want to play is by moving the ball around the pitch and with energy up front

Cobblers boss Chris Wilder

“You have to look at things but there’s only the odd one that ever does well by changing from centre-half to centre-forward.

“We could use Zander (Diamond) there but the way we want to play is by moving the ball around the pitch and with energy up front.

“No disrespect to Zander or Cresser (Ryan Cresswell) but if they play there then you get sucked into going direct and hitting diagonals into him from the off and we don’t really want to play like that.

“Our success has been when we’ve moved it around the pitch quickly and we need to stick with that.”