Forward Clive Platt believes the Cobblers’ promotion bid this season will be boosted by the fact they are going to be able to mix up their playing style.
Aidy Boothroyd’s men were branded a long-ball team last season, and they were marked up by oppositon managers as a set-piece side.
And although that tag wasn’t always justified, there were occasions when Town did play it too direct.
Platt believes that is not going to be the case this season, and the evidence of the Cobblers’ pre-season campaign backs that up.
New midfield signings Darren Carter, Gary Deegan and Ian Morris are all happiest with the ball on the deck and at their feet, as is striker Roy O’Donovan, and the brand of football ahead of the big kick off has been pleasing on the eye.
Platt feels the team will play more football this season, but he also says it is important to be direct when that approach is needed.
“The best teams have a mix of styles,” said Platt, who will miss the first couple of weeks of the season with a calf problem.
“There is no way you can play pure soccer in any division, even in the Premier League, and win the title. Manchester United didn’t do that last season, they mixed it up.
“And it’s the same with playing direct, there’s no way you can do that all year and guarantee promotion.
“So having a mix of styles is the best thing, and we do seem to have a mix here.
“We do have more ball players than we did, and if we can have a good mix, and play the right way at the right time against the right teams, then hopefully we will get more results.”
Platt has also been impressed with Boothroyd’s recruitment over the summer, and is confident ahead of the new campaign, which starts on Saturday at York City (ko 3pm).
“We have a few injuries at the moment, and we are a few players light in numbers, but from what I have seen I think we are stronger,” he said.
“The gaffer has added quality and hopefully we can get an identity as a team together.
“The players that were already here have made the new lads welcome, and I believe we will be stronger, especially if we can get a few new additions and get the injured players back.”