Cobblers boss Boothroyd will be cracking the whip in Croatia

The Cobblers begin the first stages of their preparation for the forthcoming season this week - in the glorious Croatian sunshine.
Aidy BoothroydAidy Boothroyd
Aidy Boothroyd

The Town squad are back in Novigrad, where they spent a week last summer and where they will undertake a rigorous training regime that does not, at this stage, include any matches.

Manager Aidy Boothroyd is keen to stress the trip will be about early starts and sweat-soaked sessions and not sunbathing and an extra holiday for the players.

“A lot of people, including my wife, think we’re going on a jolly-up and that we’re taking our sun cream and sombreros,” he said.

“But it’s not, it’s going to be really hard work.

“The injured players do their first session at 6.30am and then the main squad’s first session is at 7.15am.

“It’s intense, it’s three or four sessions a day and it’s a great environment with great facilities.”

The squad were at Sixfields for preliminary testing on Friday and Boothroyd was not anticipating any issues with player fitness as they resume training just six weeks after the play-off final defeat to Bradford City.

With the memory of that depressing loss still clear in his mind, the manager has stressed the need for a strong start to the new season.

“It’s important we hit the ground running,” he said. “We’ve got to integrate fast to make sure we make a strong start to the season.

“It’s a 10-month campaign but you need to be with the leaders and staying with the pack.

“It’s a Tour de France rather than it being a little sprint and we need to be fit and ready right from the start.”