Contract uncertainty not an issue for Cobblers midfielder Harding

NO DISTRACTION - Cobblers midfielder Ben Harding
NO DISTRACTION - Cobblers midfielder Ben Harding

Midfielder Ben Harding insists the uncertaintly over his Cobblers future was not a distraction in the closing weeks of the season.

Harding was one of 14 Town players who went into the final stages of the campaign, and Saturday’s npower League Two play-off final, not knowing if they were going to be offered a new contract to stay at Sixfields.

On Tuesday it was revealed that seven of those players have been offered deals, with one of the lucky ones being Harding, who was a regular in the Town midfield throughout the season.

It can’t be ideal to not know where your future lies, especially going into a Wembley final, but Harding insisted: “It is something that you get used to as a footballer.

“My mind was totally on Saturday’s game, and the contract situation hadn’t crossed my mind for the past couple of weeks.

“The game at Wembley was so important and I was getting on with that, but now I will have to try and sort it out.”

It is not yet known what deal has been offered to Harding.

Skipper Kelvin Langmead signed a two-year contract on Tuesday, but what is on the table for Harding and the others offered deals - Lee Collins, Luke Guttridge, Ben Tozer, Roy O’Donovan and Nathan Cameron - is still under wraps.

But Harding intimated after Saturday’s game at Wembley that he is settled and keen to stay.

“Hopefully I will be here next season,,” he said, following the 3-0 defeat to Bradford City.

“I would like to think I will still be at Northampton.

“I really like it, it is a good club, but we will have to wait and see.”

If Harding does sign his contract and stay with the Cobblers, he is confident the club is going to enjoy a bright future.

“There is definitely plenty to be positive about, because the players we have got have gelled well,” said the former Wycombe Wanderers man.

“We couldn’t finish it off on Saturday, but we have to look forward, look to next season and try and gain automatic promotion.”

There is an interview with Ben Harding, and several other Cobblers players in today’s 20-page Wembley play-off final pull-out