Boss Edinburgh backing striker Smith to hit the goal trail for Cobblers

Michael Smith in action for the Cobblers at Fleetwood on Saturday
Michael Smith in action for the Cobblers at Fleetwood on Saturday

Boss Justin Edinburgh is backing striker Michael Smith to hit the goal trail for the Cobblers sooner rather than later.

The Portsmouth loan man has impressed with his performances for Town since making his debut as a second-half substitute in the 2-1 defeat at Walsall earlier this month, starting the past four matches.

All that has been missing from Smith has been that elusive goal, and although he passed up a couple of excellent chances in Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Fleetwood, Edinburgh believes the 25-year-old will soon break his Town duck.

Smith hasn’t scored since netting for Pompey in a 2-1 defeat at Stevenage on November 26, and Edinburgh said: “Michael knows and feels that there were a good couple of opportunities for him at Fleetwood on Saturday

“I always say, not that I have ever been one for scoring goals so can’t really pass on too much advice, but I think it’s good he is getting into those positions.

“His all-round game is about the team and he is doing well, but I have no doubt that once he gets the first goal then there will be plenty more to follow, and I am sure the account will be opened shortly.”

With Alex Revell suffering an injury setback that has ruled him out for a further three weeks with a calf muscle strain, Smith is set to continue his attacking partnership with Marc Richards in Tuesday night’s Sky Bet League One date with Oldham Athletic, and it would be a great time to find his shooting boots.

John Sheridan’s men come to Northampton aiming to extend a run of four matches unbeaten, and it could be a nervy night at Sixfields.

Goals are likely to be at a premium, with Oldham, who have drawn their past two matches 0-0, boasting comfortably the poorest scoring record in league one (just 21 goals scored in 34 games) as well as the joint third best defensive record (33 conceded), with only Fleetwood and Bradford City letting in fewer goals.

That means the Sixfields faithful may have to show a little bit of patience, and Edinburgh is in no doubt they will do exactly that.

“We are going to have to work extremely hard, but I think the crowd have played a big part in the three home games we have had,” said the Cobblers boss.

“They were three home games that everybody expected us to win, everybody wanted us to win as they do every game, but they were certainly patient and vocal in the right way.

“I think that will play a part in all of the home games we have left this season, and I think the crowd will play a major part and have done since I have been here.”