Curle intends to make ‘adjustments and alterations’ to Cobblers squad

Keith Curle
Keith Curle

Keith Curle has reiterated his desire to make the most of the upcoming January transfer window, describing it as an opportunity to make ‘adjustments and alterations’ and stamp his own mark on the squad.

Curle was appointed Northampton manager over a month after the summer window closed, meaning he has had to make do with the group of players inherited from former boss Dean Austin.

There’ll be a time for honesty, and when the window opens in January, that’s an opportunity to make a few adjustments and some alterations if the right people are available.

The Cobblers won six of Curle’s first nine games but no wins in the last four, including their most recent defeat at Newport County, have laid bare the squad’s shortcomings and Curle has made no secret of his wish to make changes in January.

After suggesting as much on the back of Saturday’s draw with Grimsby Town, Curle restated his feelings following his side’s disappointing performance at Rodney Parade on Tuesday when they were well beaten by Newport.

“It just shows there’s a lot of hard work to be done here and re-sculpturing of the football team and the ethos and the philosophy that we want to bring,” said Curle.

“We will have discussions with the players individually on Thursday because I’m dealing with a changing room that has got someone else’s profile on it.

“I’m seeing things I like and things I’m looking to change in certain individuals and I’m finding out if they’re able to change enough.

“There’ll be a time for honesty, and when the window opens in January, that’s an opportunity to make a few adjustments and some alterations if the right people are available.

“If not, it’s a case of working and improving. Tuesday showed there’s a lot of improvement, technically, tactically, physically, mentally, that needs to be adapted within the squad that’s been assembled by others.”

Curle was reluctant to be too critical of his players after their efforts in south Wales, but he did describe some of the defending as ‘naive’ having conceded three times in the first 33 minutes.

“I don’t want to hype it up,” he added. “We’ve come away from home and we’ve been beat. There was a 10-minute period were we were naive.

“The second-half petered out and the two teams cancelled out each other, but we showed good character to get a goal back after going behind in the first five or six minutes.

“When we get a goal, no-one complains about formations or shapes or personnel. But then a set-piece into our box and slightly naive defending cost us.”