Cobblers manager Aidy Boothroyd says he’s a ‘big fan’ of Exeter City’s leading goalscorer Jamie Cureton, a player he feels is enjoying a new lease of life in the south-west.
Cureton will lead the Grecians’ attack in their game against the Cobblers at St James’ Park on Saturday (3pm kick-off) in what is a vital game for both sides.
Just three points separate the teams in npower League Two and although Northampton have a better goal difference and goals scored, that could all change at the weekend.
The 37-year-old Cureton, who is the division’s second-highest goalscorer behind Port Vale striker Tom Pope, will be tasked with adding to his 19 goals for the campaign against a Town defence that has conceded three goals in its past five games.
“I’m a big Jamie Cureton fan,” said Boothroyd. “Exeter City seem to reinvigorate these older strikers, they did it with Marcus Stewart a couple of years ago as well.
“I don’t know how they do it, maybe it’s the sea air down there that’s good for them.”
But Boothroyd’s appreciation of the current Exeter team does not begin and end with Cureton.
He also admirers several of their midfielders, although former Sixfields playmaker
“(Tommy) Doherty is a key player for them,” he said. “He’s someone who maybe hasn’t done what he should have done in the game but we know all about him and we know he’s a very good player who is having a bit of an Indian summer.
“Arron Davies will no doubt want to do well against his old club and they have Matt Oakley in their midfield too, so they have some good players.”
As well as on the field, there is a respect from Boothroyd for his opposite number off the pitch.
As well as being a snappy dresser, Paul Tisdale - who played briefly for Northampton on loan in the early-1990s - is also a shrewd operator who will have made plenty of tactical notes during his side’s 3-0 loss at Sixfields in October.
“Paul is a very tactically aware manager and he will have learned a lot from the game here earlier in the season,” he said. “We need to go there looking to maintain our away from.
“We’ve improved away from home recently but I’ll tell you on Saturday night if that improvement has continued.”