Cobblers boss Keith Curle was satisfied with what he saw from debutants Marvin Sordell and Charlie Goode during Saturday’s 4-0 defeat to Colchester United, but midfielder John-Joe O’Toole may well face another spell on the sidelines.
O’Toole was a surprise starter against Colchester having missed 10 weeks of action due to an ongoing foot injury that was initially sustained against Lincoln City in the FA Cup way back on November 10.
Give it a few weeks and those chances will go in for Marvin. I was pleased with his performance.
He looked sharp early on and began with purpose on Saturday but understandably faded before he took another kick to his foot, forcing him to be replaced by Daniel Powell on 55 minutes.
“He added something to us but unfortunately he ran out of steam and took another knock on his foot,” revealed Curle afterwards.
“Hopefully the pain won’t reoccur but he showed glimpses of what he’s about. He’s very committed and a physical presence in the midfield and gave us another dimension.”
Like O’Toole, Sordell had also gone a long time without playing before Saturday – his last appearance coming almost three months ago due to a knee injury – but he too was in from the off against Colchester.
The 27-year-old striker, who signed for the club on deadline day, missed two good chances, poking wide of an open goal with the score at 0-0 and then denied by visiting stopper Rene Gilmartin at the start of the second-half when Town trailed 1-0.
“He had that chance after a great bit of work by Aaron Pierre,” said Curle. “He was slightly off balance and it was slightly behind him, but he was able to make contact with the ball. Give it a few weeks and those chances will go in for Marvin.
“I was pleased with his performance. He had some great touches and the more games he plays, the more we get used to him and the more reliable we are and we’ll be more confident in the understanding of how he plays - he’ll be a good asset for us.”
Goode, also snapped up on deadline day, made his debut alongside Aaron Pierre and Ash Taylor in a three-man defence, but it was an afternoon to forget for the Scunthorpe loanee.
Despite conceding four times though, Curle was pleased with the 23-year-old’s display, adding: “Charlie was competitive and showed good distribution on the ball.
“You could see the range of passing he offers and at times he was a little bit over-eager where he went to try and win some headers and challenges that he shouldn’t have gone for because it took him out of the game.
“But those are things we can’t teach him and coach him and it’s just his desire to go and do well and attack everything in the air.”
Curle also confirmed Sam Hoskins and Jordan Turnbull missed the game through injury and will be assessed of Tuesday’s trip to Tranmere.