Northampton Boss Stuart Gray On Tomorrow

Last updated : 12 January 2007 By Thetashkentterror
Stuart Gray
Recently appointed Cobblers manager Stuart Gray, who was speaking to Town's official website, talked about his first home game in charge against Carlisle at Sixfields tomorrow. Ex-Southampton boss Gray talking about the role the supporters need to play in improving Northampton's home form, which is the worst in League One :

"I am very much looking forward to Saturday, nothing beats a good performance and getting three points in front of your home fans. Last Saturday was a special day and we want to now build on that.

"I'd like to thank the supporters who made the trip up to Tranmere, they were magnificent and I'm sure like us they were a bit disappointed that we couldn't quite hang on for the three points. Without the supporters we wouldn't have a football club, more often than not it's the players who have to lift the crowd but sometimes it does need to be the other way round.

"The most important thing is that we start picking up three points at home and if we can make it an intimidating atmosphere here that can only help. We want to make Sixfields a fortress and we want teams to find it hard to come here and pick up a result.

"For me it's not formations that win games, it's all about the players and their attitude and commitment. At Tranmere the work ethic of the team was fantastic and the only thing we perhaps lacked a little bit was that bit of pace to give us that release ball when we were pushed back late on in the game.

"Chris Doig and Ian Taylor are both suspended for Saturday and although he trained on Thursday Joe Burnell is still a doubt with the calf injury that ruled him out up at Tranmere. We can't really afford to lose two big players like Doig and Taylor but their loss is two other players gain and whoever comes in it is up to them to prove what they can do."

Meanwhile Cobblers midfielder Eion Jess commented on the game tomorrow :

"We know what Carlisle are all about, they are going through a bit of a sticky patch at the moment but despite that I think it is still going to be a very difficult game for us on Saturday. It will be Stuart Gray's first home game in charge on Saturday, hopefully the fans will really get behind us and we'll put in a good performance for them and get the three points.

"I am used to changes of managers, Stuart has come in with his own ideas and he's changed our training and we've been working hard on trying to get the ball in the back of the net. I think Stuart saw us a few times in a scouting capacity before he came in as manager so I think he has already seen what needs to be done.

"Everybody knows we need to score more goals and that is the responsibility of the whole team, not just the strikers. This week we've been working on getting the ball forward quickly and our training has all been about scoring goals. I thought we put in a good performance up at Tranmere and in the end we were a bit disappointed that we couldn't quite hang on for the three points. It was backs to the wall stuff at times in the second half but I thought we defended really well as a team.

"Overall this season our away form has been excellent but we haven't got the wins at home that perhaps we should have been getting. We have been working really hard all season and I'm sure if we show the same commitment in our remaining games that we have done so far we will be okay."

As already mentioned the Cobblers will be missing centre-half Chris Doig and central midfielder Ian Taylor for the game through one-match suspensions after the duo picked up five bookings for the season against Tranmere and Yeovil respectively, while Joe Burnell is a doubt with a calf injury. Winger Sam Aiston could feature for Town though after playing the full 90 minutes of a 1-1 home reserve team fixture against Stevenage Borough on Wednesday night, Aiston coming back from a broken ankle that, coincidentally enough, he suffered in the 1-1 draw with United at Brunton Park way back in early September.

The referee for tomorrow's match is Fred Graham from Stanford-le-Hope in Essex, and he will be assisted down the lines by Gary Evetts from Hertfordshire and Oliver Sally from North London. Meanwhile the fourth official will be Mark Weaver from Warley in the West Midlands.