Clean sheet and a point satisfy boss Curle after Crawley stalemate

Keith Curle saw the positives in Saturday's drab goalless draw
Keith Curle saw the positives in Saturday's drab goalless draw

Cobblers boss Keith Curle choice to focus on the positive aspects of his side's drab goalless draw with Crawley Town on Saturday, namely just a second clean sheet in over two months.

Boos at the full-time whistle suggested home supporters at the PTS were far from happy with what they witnessed from their side, who were well below-par in a scrappy and underwhelming League Two encounter.

That said, the Cobblers did have their chances with John-Joe O'Toole skewing off target from just a few yards out and Joe Powell 's free-kick rippling the side-netting, while Timi Elsnik hooked a volley narrowly over.

But Crawley too created opportunities and only David Cornell's last-gasp save from Dominic Poleon prevented Northampton from suffering a second successive home defeat.

However, while admitting his side have room for improvement in an attacking sense, Curle praised a solid defensive performance.

"It was a point earned and a clean sheet," he said. "It wasn't a classic by any stretch of the imagination but I thought we looked solid defensively and that's pleasing after conceding four in our last home game.

"I was disappointed we didn't hit the back of the net with the opportunities we had in the first-half but the team showed they've got a backbone and we're building on the win at Tranmere and the draw at Lincoln.

"It was very important to show the resolve and make sure we kept a clean sheet because if things don't come off in the final third, you walk off the pitch with a 0-0.

"The defence gave us the platform but we could have done better when we had the ball facing their goal. Some of our decision-making and some of our choices on the ball needs to improve and the players know that.

"But as a back four, we kept the ball out of the net and Dai (Cornell) did what we needed when he was called upon."