Rob Page has played down suggestions that the club’s record-breaking unbeaten run is inhibiting his players on the pitch, claiming it’s ‘the furthest thing from our minds’.
Five successive league draws have prompted some suggestions that the Cobblers are trying to protect their unbeaten record which currently stands at 29 league games and 27 in all competitions.
But Page says he’d rather risk losing in order to win, something which he backed up on Saturday when, with his side level at 1-1 away to Coventry City, he brought on striker JJ Hooper and opted to go 4-4-2.
Although the gamble didn’t pay off, it was an indication of Page’s mindset.
“We put this record behind us,” he said afterwards. “Every game we go into, we’re not speaking about this unbeaten run that the club’s on.
“It’s not even mentioned through the week. We want to go out and win games of football. Everybody else keeps talking about this unbeaten run and they’ll continue to do so as long we we don’t lose games.
“It’s a great record to have and the football club should be very proud of it, but it’s the furthest thing from our minds.
“It’s not something we look at, I certainly don’t as manager. I don’t make decisions based on that throughout the game and I won’t err in the side of caution to keep this run intact as opposed to taking a gamble and going for the win.
“I’d rather get the win, we all would, and that’s why we’re frustrated at the moment.”
What is even more frustrating for Page is his side’s inability to turn winning positions into three points, with Saturday the third time in five games this season that Northampton have gone ahead but been unable to hold on.
“It’s extremely frustrating,” added Page. “I feel for them because all the effort and hard work they’re putting in, they’re then shooting themselves in the foot.
“We’re disappointed and they were low in the dressing room but that says a lot about them because we’ve set standards for ourselves.
“Defensively we expect that week in, week out. From an attacking point of view, we know it’s an area we need to improve on and we’ll keep working on it and we did last week and we will do again this week until we get it right and eventually we’ll get there.”