On Friday night Northampton travelled to Conference Premier newcomers; Eastleigh. Most expected this match to be a huge pointer in the direction of Chris Wilders’ starting XI for the visit of Mansfield on Saturday, however it was quite the opposite. With the recent news that promising youngster Lewis Hornby’s back problem is ongoing, Wilder took this opportunity to field a team which included three trialists. Lawson D’ath, Andy Robinson and Andre Boucard all started at the Silverlake Stadium and it was D’ath who was involved from the start, flashing an in swinging cross beyond everyone, only to come back off the far post. Minutes later D’ath was again played in, carrying the ball to the by line, taking his time, and picking out the on running John Joe O’Toole who made no mistake and planted his shot into the bottom Corner.
Shortly after Duke was called into action for The Cobblers, tipping over superbly after a great effort from James Constable. Although slightly devoid of entertainment, the game wasn’t short of a tasty tackle or two; Jack Midson showing he was very un- impressed with Lee Collins’ robust challenge on the halfway line by squaring up to the centre half. John Joe O’ Toole showed moments of class throughout, his first touch never letting him down,and although Duke was called into action twice more within the 90 minutes, Towns defence looked solid and compact. It was The Cobblers who posed the bigger threat throughout, although the game grew into a drab affair as time went on; ending in a 1-0 scoreline in the visitors favour.
In his post-match interview Wilder made no indications about any of the trialists, although it was evident for all to see that D’ath was the best performer out of the three. One final friendly for a Cobblers XI is at Daventry on Tuesday evening, where one would expect to see Lawson D’ath feature as a trialist again for The Cobblers, alongside a predominantly youthful looking team.
Pictured: O’Toole scored the only goal of the game in a tight affair