Hughes full of admiration for how Cobblers have bounced back after 'unbelievable' end to last season

Mark HughesMark Hughes
Mark Hughes
‘It was an unbelievable situation they found themselves in.’

Bradford City boss Mark Hughes has nothing but respect for the way Northampton have bounced back this season following the way in which they were denied automatic promotion 12 months ago.

Town beat Barrow 3-1 on the final day of the season and looked nailed-on to finish third, only for Bristol Rovers to stick seven goals past already relegated Scunthorpe and win promotion on goals scored.

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Jon Brady’s side then missed out in the play-offs but fast forward a year and they have an opportunity to put things right. One win from their final two games will guarantee promotion – regardless of who does what elsewhere.

“That disappointment was huge,” said Hughes, whose Bradford side head to Sixfields tomorrow. “Those circumstances were unique – I don’t think they are ever likely to happen to the same extent ever again. It was an unbelievable situation they found themselves in.

“Clearly at the point where they’ve won their game, they’ve done what they thought would be enough. Then the result coming in from elsewhere has affected that.

“That was probably a big factor in the reason they weren’t able to go up through the play-offs. It was always going to be difficult for them to be the team that was hurt by that situation.

“But they’ve regrouped, as you have to, and they’ve gone again. That’s credit to the manager and staff.”