Horsfall to the rescue as Cobblers fight back to draw with Swindon
Fraser Horsfall scored a late equaliser to rescue a point for the Cobblers as they played out a hugely entertaining 1-1 draw with Swindon Town at Sixfields.
Jon Brady's men looked to be heading for a second home defeat of the season as they trailed to Tyreece Simpson's 57th-minute opener for the Robins.
But with 83 minutes on the clock, Town skipper Horsfall met Sam Hoskins' corner to head home from 10 yards and level things up.
Both sides then had chances to win it, but it ended all square between two teams who look like they will be part of the promotion shake-up this season.
Town boss Brady made one change to the team that won 1-0 at Newport County on Tuesday night, with Kion Etete replacing Nicke Kabamba in attack.
Swindon started the game really well, passing the ball around and opening up the whole pitch as they tried to stretch the Cobblers.
Their early dominance didn't see them create any chances though, and it was the Cobblers who sparked into attacking life on the 15-minute mark.
From having creating nothing, they were a couple of inches away from taking the lead as Danny Rose got up brilliantly to meet Mitch Pinnock's left-wing cross, only to send his header crashing off the post.
Moments later, Town had another glorious chance, Etete ghosting into the six-yard unmarked to meet a corner. but he headed weakly and straight to goalkeeper Jojo Wollacott.
Suddenly, Swindon, had who looked so comfortable for the first 15 minutes, couldn't get a kick.
The visitors did start to enjoy more possesion, but it was the Cobblers who looked the more dangerous, with Etete fizzing a drive just over the top after the ball dropped to him following a Pinnock long throw.
Then came a moment of high controversy.
Five minutes before the break, the Cobblers thought they had taken the lead when Rose slid in to convert Aaron McGowan's right-wing cross.
The goal was given and the Town players celebrated - only for referee Brett Huxtable to belatedly chalk it off for a foul in the build up, judging Horsfall to have blocked off Romoney Chrichlow.
The fact the referee and assistant Ian Smedley initially let it go, suggests that it was fourth official Declan O'Shea who ruled it out.
Cobblers were not happy and lost their composure and shape for a few minutes, which very nearly resulted in a goal for Swindon.
Liam Roberts saved a long-range strike, but the ball went straight to the burly Simpson just eight yards out, but he hit the bar with the follow-up.
Referee Huxtable walked off at half-time with boos and shouts of 'you don't know what you're doing' ringing in his ears.
The Cobblers started the second half strongly, but were hit with a sucker-punch as they went behind in the 57th minute.
Swindon broke down the right through Alex Gilbert, and his low cross evaded a string of Cobblers defenders and landed at the feet of Simpson, who this time made no mistake.
The Robins almost doubled their advantage moments later, but Ellis Iandolo headed inches wide.
The Cobblers were rocked, but they gradually got a grip of things and went close to an equaliser through substitute Horsfall, but his header was well saved by Wollacott.
Roberts then kept the Cobblers in it at the other end, standing up well to save from Simpson, who found space in the box to fire off a left foot shot.
Town continued to press for an equaliser, but were struggling to create clear-cut chances.
That all changed on 83 minutes as Horsfall met Hoskins' outswinging corner from the right and headed the ball into the bottom left-hand corner from 10 yards out to make it 1-1.
The goal was the least Town deserved.
Both sides continued to attack in the closing stages, and both went close to winning it.
In added time Swindion's Simpson got in on goal, but was denied by a superb last-ditch tackle from Jon Guthrie.
Town were certainly living dangerously, but they held on and the points were shared.
Cobblers: Roberts, McGowan, Horsfall, Guthrie, Koiki, Hoskins, McWilliams, Sowerby (76m, Kabamba), Pinnock (60m, Connolly), Etete (64m, Leiws), Rose. Subs: Harriman, Flores, Ashley-Seal, Maxted
Swindon Town: Wollacott, Odimayo, Iandolo, Conroy, Chrichlow, Simpson, Payne, Gilbert (74m, Mitchell-Lawson), Williams (70m Gladwin), Kesler-Hayden, Reed. Subs: Ward, East, Aguiar, Parsons, Dabre
Referee: Brett Huxtable
Goals: 0-1 - Simpson, 57 mins;
Swindon fans: 1,000