Opposition view: Ferguson says Posh targeted Cobblers' high line

Szmodics two goals came from balls over the top

Saturday, 17th April 2021, 9:12 am
Darren Ferguson.

Peterborough manager Darren Ferguson confirmed it has been a deliberate ploy to target balls over the top and expose Northampton's high line during his side's derby success on Friday night.

Right from the get-go at London Road, Posh looked to catch out the Cobblers with early and direct passing into their forward players.

The offside flag frustrated them on numerous occasions but eventually that tactic bore fruit as Sammie Szmodics scored either side of half-time to put United in control of the contest.

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Jonson Clarke-Harris sealed the deal with a spot-kick to wrap up Peterborough's seventh straight league victory over Northampton and take them to within touching distance of promotion.

“At this stage of the season it’s about results,” said Ferguson. “And this was a very important win for us. It was a tough as I expected against a team fighting for their lives, but there was a calmness and confidence about our performance that augurs well for the last five matches.

“At the start I felt we were in complete control of the game in terms of possession. We were just a little slow at times or we forced it too much. I felt the opening goal would settle us down, but it did the opposite. We got sloppy and we conceded a bad goal.

"They let us have the ball but played quite a high line and we just made our runs too early and didn't pass as quickly in the first-half. If we didn't pass quick enough and get in behind, we had to start again and go out the other side of the pitch, but we didn't do that well enough.

“‘Beevs’ should have just cleared the ball for their penalty and he knows that, but we spoke at half-time about timing the run and the forward pass better and we scored a great goal by doing just that pretty much straight away.

“The players worked out where the space was better in the second-half and we ran out comfortable winners in the end. The players showed some real character.

"It was a disappointing goal to concede but our goalkeeper didn't have much to do. They had a bit of possession but our shape and our formation was good."