Jeremy Casey’s Northampton Town v Wycombe Wanderers preview

FLASHPOINT - the Cobblers and Wycombe players were involved in a bit of a scuffle following Wanderers' late equaliser at Adams Park in October
FLASHPOINT - the Cobblers and Wycombe players were involved in a bit of a scuffle following Wanderers' late equaliser at Adams Park in October

Fixture: Northampton Town v Wycombe Wanderers (Sky Bet League Two)

Date/kick-off time: Saturday, May 2, 3pm

Venue: Sixfields Stadium

Weather forecast: 16C, mostly cloudy

Outs and doubts: Cobblers: Ian Morris (knee), Kaid Mohamed (broken metatarsal), Tom Newey (ankle), Lee Collins (knee)

Betting: Cobblers: 9/5, draw: 5/2, Wycombe: 8/5

Form guide: Cobblers: LWDLLW, Wycombe: LDWWLL

Possible line-ups: Cobblers (4-4-2): Jalal, Moloney, Diamond, Cresswell, Horwood, D’Ath, Taylor, Byrom, Holmes, Toney, Richards. Wycombe (3-5-2): Ingram, Yennaris, Murphy, Mawson, Bean, Bloomfield, Wood. Kretzschmar, Onyedinma, Hayes, Craig

Last time out: Cobblers lost 3-1 at Burton, Wycombe lost 1-0 at home to Morecambe

Most recent meeting: Saturday, October 4, 2014: Wycombe Wanders 1 (Holloway, 90+8) Northampton Town 1 (Cresswell, 31)

Jeremy Casey’s preview: To the outsider looking in, there may not be much riding on Saturday’s clash with Wycombe Wanderers for the Cobblers - but don’t say that in earshot of manager Chris Wilder.

The Town boss is still reeling from his team’s no-show in the first half at Burton last week, and is demanding his players show their true selves at Sixfields on Saturday.

The chance of a place in the play-offs has gone, but Wilder is still setting targets, still aiming as high as possible - still demanding the best from a team he felt let him, the travelling supporters and themselves down against Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s title chasers last weekend.

The words he used post-match were that the players ‘embarrassed themselves’, and the Cobblers were pretty hopeless in the opening 41 minutes at the Pirelli Stadium, 41 minutes that saw them 3-0 down and effectively out of the contest.

They did rally after the break, played better, played with more heart, and scored the goal of the game through Lawson D’Ath.

But it’s on Saturday that Wilder really wants to see a reaction and see what his team is made of - and the fact they are playing a Wycombe team still in with a shout of an automatic promotion place just adds to the challenge for the players.

Extra edge for the game comes from the fact there is also still resentment in the Sixfields ranks for what happened at Adams Park when the two sides met in October.

It was annoying enough for the Cobblers that they allowed Wycombe to equalise eight minutes into stoppage time and salvage a 1-1 draw, but the Wanderers players’ over-the-top celebrations really rankled.

Both sets of players were involved in a bit of a scuffle following that, and it seems the Cobblers players and management have long memories.

Town will be desperate to get one over the Chairboys and, as is always the case in football, will take a slightly perverse pleasure in denying an opposition team a celebration.

It hurt the Cobblers players to see Burton enjoying their promotion party at the Pirelli last weekend, and they will not want Wycombe or their manager Gareth Ainsworth to be celebrating a promotion at Sixfields.

The only way to ensure that is to deny them victory on Saturday, and I think they will do just that.

Wycombe have to go for the win, while the Cobblers should be determined to give their supporters something to cheer before the summer break.

Some of the football played by Town at Sixfields this season has been hugely entertaining, and I expect Ricky Holmes, D’Ath, Ivan Toney and co to turn it on in what should be an open game.

Northampton could also be boosted by the return to the starting line-up of 18-goal top scorer Marc Richards, who has been used as a substitute in the past three games, and he and his team-mates, will be desperate to end the campaign on a high in front of a near sell-out Sixfields - and break a few Wycombe hearts in the process.

Case’s prediction: Cobblers 2 Wycombe 2