Striker Roy O’Donovan insists the Cobblers have the experience and variation in playing style to secure promotion at Wembley tomorrow (ko 1.30pm).
Town take on Bradford City in the npower League Two play-off final, and Irishman O’Donovan is in buoyant mood ahead of the big showdown.
The Cobblers take on the Bantams for the fifth time this season, having failed to record a win in their previous four encounters against the west Yorkshire side.
The most recent of those was a 1-0 league two defeat at Valley Parade on April 6, where it is fair to say the Cobblers weren’t at their best.
Aidy Boothroyd’s men resorted to producing a bit of an aerial blitz to try and secure a share of the spoils in a tight game and failed, but O’Donovan has warned Bradford if they are expecting a similar performance from Northampton tomorrow, they may be in for a bit of surprise.
Following the hat-trick of damaging defeats at the hands of Cheltenham, Bradford and York in April, there was a definite change in playing approach from the Cobblers, and it has reaped dividends.
They are now on a five-match unbeaten run and have produced impressive dislays of passing football along the way, and O’Donovan said: “We know we can play two ways
“We can play the way we played in the first leg against Cheltenham, which was fantastic, attacking football, or we can grind a result out.
“Come Bradford, depending on how the game is going, the manager has a lot of options and we have a lot of experience in the ranks too.
“We’ve got players on the pitch like Clarke Carlisle and Hacks (Chris Hackett) who have been through this before, and we’ve got a lot of experience in the coaching team too.”
O’Donovan has been a key man for the Cobblers in recent weeks, scoring three goals in their past four games, and he can’t wait to strut his stuff at Wembley.
And he also can’t wait to put on a show for the Cobblers following, which could number anything up to 25,000 inside the national stadium.
The last time Northampton reached Wembley in 1998 they took 41,000 fans, and 12 months earlier 32,000 saw them beat Swansea City 1-0.
And O’Donovan said: “It would be brilliant to get near those kinds of numbers again this year.
“Bradford are a big club and they are sure to bring a lot of supporters so it should be a great day.
“Our supporters were all you could hear on the pitch at Cheltenham.
“From the first minute until they left the ground they were singing and making a lot of noise.
“People talk about the fans being that 12th man and that’s a real cliché but that was definitely the case in that game, they made a huge difference to us.”
Player interview: Jefferson Lake