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1  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Tranmere (h). on: Yesterday at 19:16:34
West Stand has done the current form side of things but here's my take on Saturdays game......

Jon Brady will take charge of his 100th Cobblers game as The Cobblers entertain Tranmere Rovers. Rovers are currently stuttering along in 12th place in the league, seven wins and seven defeats from their league campaign thus far. They have only scored 19 league goals, but defensively their 16 conceded means only league leaders Leyton Orient have shipped fewer.

We come across a fair few teams who have had a spell in non-league circles, Rovers are no exception, back to back relegations in 2014 and 2015 saw them slide from League 1 into the National League where they remained for three seasons before back to back promotions took them back up to League 1. They were however relegated back to league 2 in the Covid curtailed season and are now in their third season back at this level with 7th and 9th placed finishes in the past two campaigns.

Nicky Mellon returned for a second spell in charge of the club. After first managing for just short of 200 games he headed north of the border to take charge of Dundee United. A less than productive spell saw him lose more games than he won and he is now back at Prenton Park having taken over from the previous incumbent, our old friend Keith Hill.
Second time around this will be his 80th game in charge, he has 33 wins and 25 defeats to show for his efforts this time.

Squad-wise their League top scoring charts are topped by three players who each have four goals. Kane Hemmings joined after a decent spell at Burton, midfielder Josh Hawkes failed to make the grade at Sunderland before a move to the north-west and forward Elliott Nevitt was a latecomer to the professional game only making his league debut last season at the age of 24. Hemmings and Hawkes are both doubtful for this game due to illness.

Cobblers connections in Paul Lewis who joined us in 2021 from Tranmere before rejoining them this year after making 37 league starts for us and scoring six goals. Jordan Turnbull is also in the Rovers ranks but he also misses this game through suspension after picking up a red card in the draw at Swindon three weeks ago.

Head to head is pretty even, I don't believe that Tranmere played in the Southern League so i'm hoping that we do indeed lead the H2H with 17 wins to their 15 and there have been 12 draws. Rovers last victory at Sixfields was in 2006 when they won 3-1, Scott McGleish netting the Cobblers goal. Since then they have drawn two and lost three of their subsequent visits. The last of those came in March of this year when two Fraser Horsfall goals and another from Mitch Pinnock saw us leading 3-0 before they pulled a couple of goals back in the last fifteen minutes. A near full house crowd of 7379 were on hand to witness the thriller. That completed a league double to go along with our 2-0 win at Prenton Park in October 21, goals from Etete and a Hoskins penalty.

Its Will Finnie who is down to be the man in the middle for Saturdays game. A fourth season on the league list for him but not a name that I had come across before. A look back through the stats reveals that he has never reffed a Cobblers League game before, although he did take charge of our Trophy game at Portsmouth back in December 2019, a game we lost 2-1. He took charge of both Rovers fixtures with Sutton in the League last season, they won one and drew the other. So far this season he has shown 52 yellow cards and one red in his 16 games.
2  General Category / The Games Room / Re: GTA Game 24 Bradford City(A) on: November 18, 2022, 22:49:08 pm
3  The Hotel End / Other Football & Sport / Re: TV on: November 17, 2022, 10:28:15 am
Indeed there was a massive crowd..... 1,059 was the attendance, 219 Pish amongst them.
4  The Hotel End / Other Football & Sport / Re: Former Cobblers Exploits 2020/21 on: November 16, 2022, 19:06:28 pm

Maybe this had an influence on why he wasn't picked?  Shocked

Purely coincidental I'm sure..... Grin
5  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Jon Brady appreciation society on: November 16, 2022, 18:21:15 pm
If it was up to the Hatters fans.........Brady only 12th!

Unfortunately for them their first choice (O'Neil) has ruled himself out of the running.
6  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Bradford away on: November 16, 2022, 18:17:06 pm
So here we go then, my preview of the big game on Saturday, using the available stats I have to hand so apologies if any of them are later proved to be incorrect!

Its 4th v 3rd in the table, The Bantams v The Cobblers, Mark Hughes v Jon Brady etc etc.

Bradford sit one place and two points below us in the league, so obviously a win for them will see them leapfrog us into the automatic promotion places. Despite their rise up the table almost un-noticed they have not won at home in all competitions since beating Stevenage on 17th September, four draws and two defeats in the six games since then. Their away form has earned them points with their most recent two games seeing back to back wins at Mansfield and Sutton.
Stockport are the only side to leave Valley Parade with maximum points this term, although Blackburn (EFL Cup) and Harrogate (FA Cup) have won on their patch too. Their other two league defeats came early on in the season at Barrow and Colchester.

It is now over 20 years since Bradford were in the Premier League (seems like yesterday to me!) although after relegation from the top flight in 2001 a sharp downward spiral saw them in the fourth tier by 2007. They did of course regain promotion to League 1 after winning at Wembley against someone or other in 2013, but after six seasons at the higher level they fell back to the basement in 2019.
Innovative season ticketing pricing introduced in 2008 boosted their average attendances back over five figures, although figures have fallen back from almost 20,000 in 2018 to 15,450 last season. Over 19000 saw their season opener v Doncaster and 18,615 saw the Stockport game. Another decent crowd is sure to be in attendance on Saturday.

Mark Hughes is the man charged with trying to bring back the glory days to that part of West Yorkshire. Hughes is vastly experienced having managed in over 600 games for the likes of Blackburn, Manchester City and Stoke. He took over the reigns at Bradford in February of this year and so far has recorded 16 wins in his 37 games in charge.

Suspension has robbed us of the chance to see the Leagues two top marksmen in action against one another, Sam Hoskins needless late booking on Saturday sees him serve a one match ban. For Bradford though 15 goal (12 of them in the League) Andy Cook should be leading the line. He was prolific with Tranmere and Barrow (two spells) and has continued his rich vein of form with Bradford, 24 league goals in fifty starts for him. Tyreik Wright and Scott Banks are next in the charts with three league goals apiece.
Also on Bradfords books is Vadaine Oliver, he has only made 3 league starts so far this season though with a further 13 appearances off the League goal to add to another one scored in the Papa Johns Trophy.

The head to head is already indicated by Marvo....!! Our first meeting with Bradford did not come until September 1972 and to date we have met 36 times. Bradford certainly hold the upper hand with 21 wins to our seven. We met five times in the 2012/13 season, the two league games, an FA Cup match and replay and of course the playoff final...we didn't taste victory in any of them!

We have recorded three victories at Valley Parade, all by the same 2-1 scoreline. 1976, 2007 and most recently 2018 where goals from John-Joe O'Toole and Chris Long sent us to victory in front of a crowd of 19,343.
Our last visit was on the same November weekend last season where a Mitch Pinnock goal on the hour was soon cancelled out by Charles Vernam in a 1-1 draw. That 2018 victory is our only win over Bradford in the last FIFTEEN attempts home and away.

As said earlier in the thread, the man in the middle is slated to be Anthony Backhouse. He's been on the League list since 2017. So far this season he's flashed 40 yellow cards in his 13 games, no reds yet, and has operated mainly at League 1 level. His last Cobblers assignment came in last seasons playoff semi final defeat at Mansfield and prior to that it was in the league game between the same sides in April where he sent off Paul Lewis.
If you are looking for lucky omens then don't look towards Backhouse...we have not won any of the seven games where he has reffed the Cobblers. Mind you, it seems Bradford don't have much success with him either, he sent off defender Paudie O'Connor in his last Bradford game, a 2-0 defeat at Oldham last February.

7  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Northampton Town FC The Official Centenary History 1897-1997 on: November 15, 2022, 15:56:47 pm
Do you have a version that doesn't include anything before the FL ?  Grin

8  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Jon Brady appreciation society on: November 14, 2022, 22:09:45 pm
Armed with the compensation money for Jones, Luton should be able to make Brady/Calderwood an offer they'd find impossible to turn down. The compensation to us shouldn't be too much for them to afford.

Who else might Luton be interested in?

Neil Critchley is the favourite, although he's also wanted by Wigan. Gary O'Neil is another name mentioned if Bournemouth make a permanent appointment (Bielsa amongst those rumoured)

Luton reported to be looking at a long term appointment to take the club forward.....someone who wants to build a future, suggesting that this rules out the "older experienced managers" such as Wilder or Dyche.

Southampton reported to have paid Luton £4m compensation to get Jones......seems a big price to pay for someone who failed at Stoke in between his Luton stints.
9  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Jon Brady appreciation society on: November 14, 2022, 21:36:24 pm
There's a bit of traffic on the Luton Outlaws board....even Evers seems to have joined the messageboard to issue a "hands off" warning!
10  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Bradford away on: November 14, 2022, 19:16:44 pm
Bowie is in the Scotland U21 squad for their home game (at Motherwell FC) with Iceland on Thursday night.....
11  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Gillingham (a) on: November 12, 2022, 14:45:02 pm
I do question the worth of posting stats if they are wrong a lot of the time. We have 67 wins to 51 defeats. We have played Gillingham more times than any other club (147 times), worthy of a mention I'd have thought. The first game between us was in 1901 (we won 3-2) when Gillingham went under the name New Brompton. They changed to their present name Gillingham in 1912. We beat them 7-0 and then 7-1 in less than a year between December 1908 and October 1909. Those victories came under Herbert Chapman, arguably the Cobblers greatest ever manager, the 7-1 came in the season when we became Champions of the Southern League and we went on to play Newcastle, Champions of the Northern League in the Charity Shield at Stamford Bridge (lost 0-2). Our worst defeats are 1-5, 1-5 & 2-5 and they all occurred in the 1930's.

Once again, I make the offer, you are welcome to my workbook of Cobblers records. Wouldn't you rather be giving out the correct information and not wipe away some of the most glorious times in our history? The chocolate and blue quartered strip we are wearing on occasions this year to celebrate that history comes from 1897-8. Maybe you feel we should be wearing the strip from 1958/9 on the introduction of division 4 of the football league or maybe 1920/1 when we joined Division 3 South? Or do you records go back to World war 1 or 2, or are they just since SKY came on the scene? Whatever, perhaps you should start with the words "since"?

I’d rather you did the previews in the future then….I can’t be ‘asked’….!
12  General Category / The Games Room / Re: Prediction league 12.11.22 on: November 12, 2022, 14:22:36 pm
Hull City v Reading. 1-2
Luton Town v Rotherham United. 1-1

League One
Ipswich Town v Cheltenham Town. 3-0
Lincoln City v Plymouth Argyle. 2-1

League Two
Gillingham v Northampton Town. 1-0
Grimsby Town v Doncaster Rovers. 2-2

National League
Torquay United v Chesterfield. 1-3
Wealdstone v Wrexham 0-4
13  General Category / The Games Room / Re: GTA Game 23 Gillingham(A) on: November 12, 2022, 11:55:21 am
14  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Gillingham (a) on: November 10, 2022, 21:39:31 pm
Brief report he said................... Grin

Very readable report all the same.

Once I started……!
15  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Gillingham (a) on: November 10, 2022, 19:41:16 pm
A couple of posters have already done their bit with stats so i'll keep my preview on the brief side.....

Top scorers in the division visit the lowest scorers in the division..... Gills currently sitting in 22nd place in the table, just two wins from their 16 league games so far, and just six goals scored. Defensively though they have conceded 17 which is two fewer than us!
Gillingham are back playing in League Two after nine seasons in the next division up, and they've found it a struggle this season. Those two wins have both come at home, both by a scoreline of 1-0, Rochdale the victims in the Gills first game of the season, Sutton were the last to taste defeat at Priestfield on 1st October. Has to be said though that Gillingham are unbeaten in their last five at home in all competitions, that Sutton game was followed up with a win over Brighton's U21's in the Papa Johns and then a draw against Colchester in the same competition with then two league draws against Stevenage and Barrow.
They didn't progress in the Papa Johns despite picking up five points in the group stage, they drew at AFC Fylde in the FA Cup with a replay to follow next week, and of course they are into the last 16 of the Carabao Cup following a penalty shootout win at Premier League Brentford on Tuesday night. Prior to this they won at AFC Wimbledon and then beat Exeter, also on penalties.

Neil Harris is the current Gills manager, he took over from Steve Evans (after a short stint by caretaker Steve Lovell) in January and was unable to stop the slide into League 2.....he has recorded just nine wins in his 41 games in charge.

Goals in the squad have been hard to come by as already indicated, top scorers Elkan Baggott and Scott Kashket have two goals apiece. Lewis Walker has scored three in the EFL Trophy but is yet to find the net in the League.

No Cobblers connections in their squad, although they do have a midfielder by the name of Shaun Williams......! Their top scorer of the past two seasons, former Cobbler Vadaine Oliver is now plying his trade at Bradford.

An extensive head to head record between the two clubs, we lead with 53 wins to their 41. We have won in five of our last ten visits to the Priestfield, the last of those wins came in 2017 when Matt Grimes and Daniel Powell goals helped us to a 2-1 win. Our last visit ended in a draw, Oliver unsurprisingly on the scoresheet for the Gills with a second scored by Olly Lee, but two goals in the last 11 minutes from Ryan Edmondson (his second and last Cobblers goal) and Fraser Horsfall gave us a point in a game played behind closed doors in April 2021.

Third season EFL ref Declan Bourne is down to be the man in the middle....he likes his cards.... 36 yellow and three reds in just eight games this season, take note Guthrie and Hoskins who are still walking the disciplinary tightrope! We last saw Mr Bourne in our 1-0 home defeat to Crawley back in January and before that he was in charge of our 4-0 drubbing at Oxford in December 2020. This would appear to be the first time he has taken charge of a game involving Gillingham.
16  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Redevelopment Closer Than Ever? on: November 09, 2022, 18:09:22 pm
One more time... who?

Also... if CDNL go, KT and DB still own the club  Cool

KT owns very little, he runs the club...... DB and JB own the club!
17  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: Redevelopment Closer Than Ever? on: November 08, 2022, 19:01:28 pm
I think he might be alluding to the suggestion that certain people may have been colluding with with Cildara……

Alluding and colluding in the same sentence....!! I like it!

Sadly though, it is the inescapable truth that both the Council AND the Club were well aware of the presence of Cilldara and their interest in the land as far back as early 2020.....the Trust (or its representatives/advisers) certainly weren't aware of anything until much later (early 2022)
18  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: The magic of the Cup. Chesterfield away FAC 1R 05.11.22 on: November 07, 2022, 20:33:55 pm
Im guessing that Chesterfield would have a different number ball anyway?

No, Chesterfield were ball 38, as we would have been had we it was the 38th tie drawn in the 1st round draw.
19  The Hotel End / Other Football & Sport / Re: Football Managers on: November 07, 2022, 14:17:39 pm
Alex Morris stood down from the managers role at Crewe for compassionate reasons, he is now the assistant manager, Lee Bell is in interim charge of the League 2 side.

20  The Hotel End / Cobblers Corner / Re: The magic of the Cup. Chesterfield away FAC 1R 05.11.22 on: November 05, 2022, 21:09:45 pm
I know you like your stats Grange, this is the first time since the inception of the league Trophy that we've lost ALL our cup games in a season. We did lose them all in 1972/3 but that was just two games.

History makers!!
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