Hartlepool United boss Craig Hignett says he has pinpointed the Cobblers’ ‘weaknesses’ and that he has ‘a plan’ to exploit the chinks in the armour of Chris Wilder’s in-form team.
Hignett has only been in charge of the struggling Pools for three matches, winning one and losing two, and was at Bootham Crescent on Tuesday night to see the Cobblers beat fellow relegation strugglers York City 2-1.
And after seeing the Cobblers in the flesh, although the Liverpudlian accepts they are a class act, he believes he knows how to beat Wilder’s table-topping team, who have won 10 Sky Bet League Two games in a row, and 15 of their past 16.
Hignett has obviously been impressed with the Cobblers’ charge to move 12 points clear at the top of the table, and is a fan of Town’s style of play, but the former Middlesbrough player is confident his Hartlepool team can upset the odds at the Victoria Ground on Saturday.
“Northampton are on a great run, and all credit to Chris and his team there, they have been in fantastic form, and no doubt it will be a difficult game,” Hignett told hartlepoolunited.co.uk
“I saw them on Tuesday night against York, where they made changes and rested a lot of people, but they have got a really good squad. They play good football, are a really positive team and will get men forward.
“They break in numbers, and they press as well so it is a tough game for us, but one we have a plan for.
“We have seen weaknesses in them where we can exploit, and if we play anywhere like we did against Luton last Saturday then we will give them a right game.”
Asked to expand on the plan he has to halt the Northampton juggernaut, Hignett added: “It is always better to see teams live. You see things live that you wouldn’t see on a DVD.
“There have been one or two bits that we have picked out, and highlighted areas where maybe we can cause Northampton problems, and I think we can.”
Hignett was an exciting, attacking player in his heyday, and he is keen for his Hartlepool team to display the same attributes.
Pools haven’t had a problem scoring goals this season - they have netted in every game since early November - but they have a problem keeping them out at the other end, which Hignett is keen to rectify.
“Let’s hope it goes in our favour, but I would rather win a game 5-4 than nick it 1-0,” when asked if the fans can expect goals in the match against the Cobblers.
“In the situation we are in, we have conceded goals and I am aware of that, and that has to change. I am confident once it does change, and it will, then we will be alright.”