Northampton Town v Bristol Rovers Match Preview

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By Simon Gray

After a fantastic season in League Two, Northampton Town have started life in League One brilliantly.

The Cobblers, who topped the fourth tier of English football, are fourth place in League One following a strong start which helped them face giants Manchester United in the EFL Cup third round.

Northampton manager Rob Page, who replaced former boss Chris Wilder has said that they are way of a ‘strong Bristol Rovers side’.

“Every game we play is a difficult game for different reasons,” Page told the club’s website.

“Bristol Rovers play in a similar way to Swindon and I know they have got some gifted players in their team.

“Their recruitment has been excellent for them and they do both sides of the game really well.

“The games are coming thick and fast for us at the moment but what pleases me is that the Manchester United game wasn’t too much of a distraction.”

Bristol Rovers go into the game after losing 1-0 away at Sheffield United in which forward Jermaine Easter was sent off but they will have Stuart Sinclair back from suspension but manager Darrell Clarke has not given an inkling on whether star striker Matty Taylor will be fit, insisting that The Gas are not a one man team.

“The group has had success and continues to do well because we are a team that is not reliant on one or two players,” he told the Bristol Post.

“Taylor is a match-winner and every side needs one of those who can make the difference.

“I didn’t lose any sleep when I found out he was injured because I have good players waiting for their opportunity.

“Luke James has looked really sharp in training but has been unable to force his way into the team because those who started ahead of him at the start of the season have really been at it.

“Rory Gaffney needs a goal but he has been working hard and has caused defenders problems with his energy whenever he has played. Ellis (Harrison) and Jermaine (Easter) have also both been scoring goals.”

Stats

The last time the two sides met was at Sixfields came last season where Matty Taylor and Ellis Harrison secured a 2-2 draw after being 2-0 down with 14 minutes to go.

Both Northampton and Rovers were involved in the League Two relegation battle of 2013 but have since been promoted to League One.

Northampton midfielder John-Joe O’Toole joined from The Pirates following that relegation and scored against them just over a year ago.

 

 

 

21, Bristol Rovers fan for as long as i can remember. Highlight has to be to 06/07 Play Off win. Seen Rovers at 43/92 clubs in England and counting.

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