Hurt Hasselbaink demanding a reaction from his Cobblers team at Wimbledon

Cobblers boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink
Cobblers boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink

It’s fair to say the Cobblers’ insipid performance in their 1-0 defeat to Rochdale last Saturday put a dampener on many a supporter’s weekend - but it’s arguable if anybody was hurting more than boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink.

The Dutchman was somebody who wore his heart on his sleeve as a player, and he admits he is the same as a manager.

I think we have to keep on doing what we are doing, and we now need to try and put together another run, another four matches or more

Cobblers boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink

Football is obviously a sport full of highs and lows, a game for winners and losers, and Hasselbaink accepts that the lows can hit him pretty hard.

The defeat to Dale came like a bolt out of the blue, with the Cobblers having won three and drawn one of their previous four matches, having seemingly turned the corner onto the right road after a season of too many U-turns.

And Hasselbaink admits the weekend was not a happy one for him, although spending time with his family raised his spirits and shook him back to normality.

Asked how how he takes such setbacks as a manager, Hassebaink admitted: “I react badly.

“I am somebody who takes things to heart, especially those kind of things, and I am not good company afterwards.

“I was very quiet, I went home and I must say the wife knows me very well and is brilliant, and knows when not to talk to me, and when to say something.

“The kids are going to be the kids, and they make you be a normal person in a way, because you can’t get angry at the kids.

“They keep on smiling because they don’t know better and in a way that is nice.

“Sunday is normally family day for me, and what was in my head was not nice, but on the other hand you have to also stay a dad, and be loving and all that kind of stuff.

“So you try to do that, and it’s not easy, but you try.”

On Tuesday, Hasselbaink was his usual relaxed and cheerful self talking to the media, and was setting his sights on the future, rather than dwelling on the past.

“I think we have to keep on doing what we are doing, and we now need to try and put together another run, another four matches or more,” said the Cobblers boss.

“That is what we need to try to do, and hopefully we can do that.

“We need a reaction, and we need a good performance.”

If the Cobblers needed an added incentive when they travel to the Cherry Red Records Stadium on Saturday, it is the fact they can leapfrog their hosts with a victory.

Wimbledon had the chance to go four points clear of Town on Tuesday night, but they were surprisingly beaten 2-1 at rock-bottom Bury, which followed on from a 2-0 defeat at Doncaster Rovers on Saturday.

They were the Dons’ first two defeats of 2018, but Hasselbaink says he isn’t going to worry too much about the opposition and what they are going to do.

“I think it’s about us, and we have to concentrate on us,” said the Town manager.

“Everybody here is feeling down because of the performance on Saturday, and we want to put that right and we want to have a good performance this weekend.

“We want a good performance, have a good way of playing football, and do ourselves justice, that is what we are looking for.”