Daniel Powell says Keith Curle has brought an air of calm to the Cobblers squad since taking over from Dean Austin – but made it clear the new boss also has ‘a ruthless streak’.
Curle replaced Austin at the beginning of October and has enjoyed a hugely encouraging first month in charge.
In six games he has won three, including two in Sky Bet League Two, drawn two and lost just once, in Saturday’s trip to Milton Keynes Dons.
Tuesday night’s 5-0 thrashing of Macclesfield is the obvious highlight of Curle’s time in charge so far, and his record is all the more impressive when you consider he took over a team that had won just once in the first 12 matches of the season.
So what has been the major difference between life under Curle, to life under Austin?
Powell thinks it is down to the fact the new manager has the right blend of cool and control.
“He’s getting the best out of the lads,” said the 27-year-old.
“He’s a very calm manager but he knows when to turn it on and be a bit more ruthless.
“He’s just a calming head, and I think maybe we’re a bit calmer on the pitch and not quite as tense, but the performances are definitely getting better.
“He keeps us on our toes and we’re quite flexible.”
And he added: “He can leave out big players, and we have quite a few players injured, and yet we can still put in a performance like that on Tuesday.
“Results like that only give you confidence, so hopefully we can build on it.
“We’re getting more players back fit now and we’ll be looking to get another win on Saturday.”
Confidence will certainly be sky high in the Cobblers camp as they prepare for Saturday’s Sky Bet League Two clash with mid-table Oldham Athletic at the PTS Academy Stadium.
A 5-0 win doesn’t come along too often for any team, but Powell believes that is a result that has been on the cards and that Macclesfield were simply unlucky they were the team on the receiving end.
“I think that’s been coming all season,” said Powell.
“We’ve had quite a few good performances and all we’ve been missing is the goals but it clicked on Tuesday.
“We’re delighted with the clean sheet as much as anything and it was unfortunate for Macclesfield that it clicked for us - and I think we could have scored a few more.
“I wish we could put our finger on why it all came together, but we’ve put in a lot of hard work throughout the week and we were just clinical.”