Cobblers boss Chris Wilder admits he faces a huge headache in selecting his team for Saturday’s Sixfields showdown with York City - and that’s exactly the way he wants it to be.
The Town players return to training on Monday having enjoyed a rare weekend off, and aside from long-term injury victim Paul Corry the whole squad is fit and available.
Lawson D’Ath and Alfie Potter are both expected to have finally shrugged off groin and rib injuries respectively, while new loan signing Luke Prosser will also be pushing for a start.
It was a great weekend for the the out-of-action Cobblers, who saw rivals Plymouth Argyle and Bristol Rovers both lose in Sky Bet League Two, meaning Town stayed top of the table, two points clear of the Pilgrims with two games in hand.
Those results will have put an extra spring in the step of the Cobblers squad, and Wilder knows he is going to have his work cut out finding his strongest 11 for the visit of bottom-of-the-table York.
“It is good for me, and there are some tough decisions to be made,” said the Town boss.
“Everybody is playing well, whether it’s a Tuesday friendly at Stevenage, whether it’s training, whether it’s a first team game at Milton Keynes, or we change it around like we did at Dagenham.
“There are some tough decisions to be made on selection, but they are good decisions to have to make.
“We have to make sure we get that right, but the group is really focused and looking to do well.”
The January transfer window closes at 11pm on Monday night, and it seems unlikely Wilder will be adding any extra bodies to his squad, although he isn’t completely ruling that out.
The Cobblers boss feels the squad size the club is currently carrying is about right, with the loan signings of Prosser, James Collins and Lee Martin having boosted the strength in depth.
“Look at the squad and we have 21/22 players, so we’ve not got 25, 26 or 27 players like some of the other teams, and we’re not down to the numbers we had at Milton Keynes so I think it is a great number,” said Wilder.
“You have your 18 on match day, and you are looking at three lads that maybe won’t be involved.
“You have to look at suspensions and injuries too. You saw that last week we lost Lawson D’Ath, we lost Alfie Potter, and all of a sudden we are really low on numbers.
“We do have a couple of players that can do a few positions as well, so if we can keep the group healthy, fit and focused then we are happy.”
Wilder will also be keeping his fingers crossed that nobody makes a late move for any of his star players, stating again: “We don’t want to lose anybody.”