Wigan Athletic manager Paul Cook has backed Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to be success at Sixfields after being impressed with aspects of Northampton’s performance in Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat at the DW Stadium.
A sturdy defensive display by the Cobblers almost earned them an excellent away point at the pre-season title favourites but, in the end, Michael Jacobs’ fine long-range strike proved the difference.
Town were denied a late penalty and Leon Barnett also went close to nicking a draw as Cook’s Latics, who went into the game on the back of successive 3-0 wins, were given a scare before sealing victory and moving up to second spot in Sky Bet League One.
“They’re a good side and Jimmy’s going to be a good manager,” Cook told Wigan’s club website following Tuesday’s game.
“He knows exactly what he’s doing, they were very difficult to break down and were a threat with the players they’ve got.
“Our lads had to defend and we had to change shape late on. We did it at Charlton and we thought it worked well and we did it again with Max (Power) coming on and sitting a bit deeper than Samy (Morsy) and Lee (Evans).
“It’s one of the most pleasing wins of the season for me after we had the extra game with the international break.
“Northampton have done smashing since Jimmy came in, with them changing managers they’ve been on a good run and it was always going to be a difficult game.
“But I thought we showed really good patience in the game, we created really good opportunities to score.”
As well as Jacobs, Cook also singled out goalkeeper Jamie Jones for his ‘outstanding’ save when denying Barnett a late equaliser.
He added: “Michael Jacobs’ finish was absolutely top draw but Jamie Jones needs to get a mention for an absolutely outstanding save but all in all, I think we deserved winners tonight and to get a clean sheet and a 1-0 win, it’s really pleasing, I’m delighted for the boys.”