Bradford City manager Stuart McCall was a relieved man on Saturday after his side survived sustained second-half pressure to beat the Cobblers 1-0 at Sixfields.
After Tony McMahon’s fine free-kick put City ahead, Northampton probed and pressed for an equaliser for much of the second-half but, despite creating two excellent late chances, the visitors held on for victory.
“The goal was fit to win any game but I thought in the first-half we had chances and we played some good football,” said McCall, whose side are up to third and within three points of League One leaders Shrewsbury.
“We knew in the second-half they would come at us. They’ve probably got the biggest side in the league for set-pieces so we knew we’d have to be really strong.
“(Alex) Revell up top is a handful, they brought (Marc) Richards on and they’ve got (Matt) Crooks, plus the centre-backs, so they’ve got a side of really big boys and we knew there was going to be a lot of defending.
“I was disappointed we couldn’t get our foot on the ball a bit more but Northampton have won two on the bounce at home and I saw them against Wigan in midweek and clearly the new manager has turned them around.
“It was always going to be a tough game and we were camped in a bit more than we would have liked and they put a lot of balls in and we maybe rode our luck in the last few minutes.
“Overall, I’d like to play great football all the time but we won again and it’s another clean sheet. This is a tough place to come and they’ve got a good squad this season so they’ll beat a lot of sides here.”