Cobblers boss Keith Curle lamented his side's failure to take their chances at crucial moments during Saturday's heavy 4-0 home defeat to Colchester United.
The final scoreline gives the impression of a totally one-sided contest, but it could so easily have been different had debutant Marvin Sordell taken either of his chances, both of which came early in each half.
But he missed both and Colchester ruthlessly made Town pay, Frank Nouble setting them on their way with a close-range finish in the first-half before they piled on the misery in the second-half, Kane Vincent-Young, Abobaker Eisa and Sammie Szmodics all scoring.
That condemned the Cobblers to their first home league defeat since early September, and leaves them facing the grim reality of a relegation battle over the remaining 16 games of the season.
"It was a difficult afternoon and a poor result, but arguably you could say they had 10 chances, we had nine and yet they've scored four goals and we haven't scored any," said Keith Curle afterwards.
"The chances we had and the timings of those chances were key. They're not half chances, they're good chances and if you take them, it alters the course of the game.
"If you miss them, they're a good team and will take advantage. They've been building for a couple of years and have put a good squad together - you can tell they will be up there at the end of the season.
"I think the chances we had today are better than any chances we've had recently. We had clear shots at goal and one-on-one opportunities but there's an anxiety around the club and around the changing room because we need results.
"We need to score goals and we need to be better at defending our goal in terms of not allowing other teams to create chances against us.
"If we score goals at the times we have chances, it puts a completely different spin on the game.
"They had one clear chance in the first-half and go in 1-0 up. We had two chances in the first-half and then another straight after half-time, but you've got to say it was a great save from the goalkeeper."