Midfielder Watson's praise for clinical Cobblers as he relishes his playing return

Returning midfielder Ryan Watson says the Cobblers are showing their clinical side as they continue their charge up the Sky Bet League Two table.

Sunday, 24th November 2019, 2:22 pm
Updated Sunday, 24th November 2019, 2:23 pm
Ryan Watson in action against Grimsby Town

The 26-year-old was a surprise inclusion in the match day squad for Saturday's clash with managerless Grimsby Town at the PTS Academy Stadium, and he played his part in the 2-0 win as he came off the bench for the final 18 minutes.

It was the former Milton Keynes Dons man's first playing action since he broke his collarbone in the leasing.com Trophy group clash with Peterborough United on September 3, and it was an unexpected return as he only resumed full training last week.

But he looked like he had never been away during his late appearance, playing his part to help the Cobblers lock down a fifth win in six league games to see them rise to fifth in the table, and to within two points of the top three.

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Town were under some pressure early on against the Mariners, with Scott Wharton's opening goal coming somewhat against the run of play.

The game was still in the balance at that point, but once Vadaine Oliver poked Town 2-0 up in the 42nd minute there was only going to be one winner.

"I think it was a bit of a scrappy game to be honest, but we were clinical and in this league that is what you have to be, you have to take your chances when you get them," said Watson.

"Once we were ahead I think we managed the game very well, and I don't really think they had any clear-cut chances, perhaps a few half chances.

"But I think we had a few chances ourselves and could have scored again, but I think at 2-0 it was comfortable in the end."

And on his return to playing action, the former Leicester City man said: "I am delighted to be back.

"I have put in a lot of hard work over the past 11 or 12 weeks, and it has been a frustrating time.

"It's great to be able to come back and try and help the team, and obviously we are doing pretty well at the moment.

"The boys have been brilliant. I have been watching the past few weeks and just couldn't wait to be back with them, and all credit to the staff and the manager, everybody is working hard and we are all pulling in the right direction.

"As I say, we have been very clinical in the past few weeks, and if we get a chance we seem to be taking it. I think the team has a lot of belief, and we know we are going to score goals."

One man who is starting to score goals is Oliver, who added to the two he scored at Chippenham in the FA Cup with another at the weekend, and Watson was also delighted about that.

"I am made up for Vadaine," he said. "He works hard every time he comes on or plays, and he has got his reward.

"He has been starting the past few weeks and he has been brilliant for us.

"On Saturday he has got another reward, and a goal, and that's great for him."