Chippenham Town manager Mark Collier accepted the Cobblers were just too good for his side during Sunday's 3-0 defeat in the first-round of the FA Cup.
The Bluebirds ply their trade in the National League South and that gulf in quality was apparent during a one-sided first 45 minutes at Hardenhuish Park.
Harry Smith's opener was followed by two goals by Vadaine Oliver and the tie was as good as settled by half-time.
"In the first-half we were maybe too respectful and that was disappointing and at 3-0 the game is probably done and dusted, however I thought the second-half was more like us," said Collier.
"If we could have scored one of the chances we created, then who knows. But it's been a great cup run and we're pleased with how we've gone about our business, unfortunately today was one step too far."
Chippenham struggled to cope with Smith and Oliver and all three goals came from crosses into the box.
"We knew Northampton would have a lot of physicality, a lot of size and a lot of presence about them and that was always going to be a problem," added Collier.
"If they can't play into the wide areas then they can play into the front men and they get runners off them and they've also got a huge back three so we knew that would be an issue for us.
"But we do feel a little hard done by with the first goal because we had Will Richards, our best header of the ball, off the pitch with a nosebleed and the man that he's marking scores.
"But credit to Northampton, they've come and done a good job on us and showed why they are where they are in the division.
"They came to watch us and they respected the competition and respected us and they've been a credit to play against. It's a 3-0 defeat but one we can be proud of."