Northampton Town 1-0 Newport County: Cobblers earn a huge win in their promotion fight
Photo by Pete Norton/Getty Images

Northampton Town secured a huge three points in their fight for promotion when they beat Newport County by a goal to nil in League Two at Sixfields on Tuesday night.

Fraser Horsfall's goal after 82 minutes was the difference between the two sides.

The result moves Northampton up into the automatic promotion places and they now sit third, while Newport drop down to seventh.

  • Story of the match

After a quiet opening ten minutes, Northampton goalkeeper Liam Roberts was called into action at his near post when a nice throw-in routine fell to Finn Azaz who forced Roberts into a save at his near post.

Newport had another good chance ten minutes later when Dom Telford found himself unmarked at the back post, his volley was saved well by Roberts.

It took Northampton just less than half an hour to create their first good chance of the game when Sam Hoskins delivered from the right to find Ali Koiki, who under pressure from Cameron Norman, saw his effort fly wide. 

The hosts almost took the lead ten minutes before the break when Hoskins’ effort had beaten Newport keeper Nick Townsend and was heading goalwards before a heroic clearance from Scott Bennett on the line kept the scores level. 

Jon Brady's side wanted a penalty moments later when Paul Lewis was brought down in the area but referee Benjamin Speedie waved away the challenge and cautioned Bez Lubala for dissent during Northampton's protests.

Neither side could find the opener and the sides went in level at the break.

Half time: Northampton Town 0-0 Newport County.

Newport gifted Northampton a golden opportunity to take the lead early on in the second half when an error from Mickey Demetriou was pounced on by Louis Appere who went in on goal and blasted his effort over.

The Welsh side had a golden opportunity of their own just after the hour mark when Finn Azaz slipped Dom Telford through on goal who was denied well by Roberts who came rushing off his line to keep the scores level. 

Northampton have been dangerous from set-pieces all season and almost took the lead with just 20 minutes to go when Mitch Pinnock's cross from the right found Jon Guthrie who headed over.

Pinnock continued to create chances and moments later delivered a cross which found Ali Koiki unmarked at the back post who put in a contender for miss of the season and blasted his effort over the bar.

Northampton finally made the breakthrough after 82 minutes when Pinnock's corner found Fraser Horsfall at the back post who tapped home to put the hosts ahead despite the best efforts of Townsend who tried to palm it away from goal.

The visitors almost equalised immediately when Courtney Baker-Richardson's goalbound header was tipped over the bar well by Roberts.

Northampton held on and clinched a huge three points in their bid for promotion.

Full time: Northampton Town 1-0 Newport County

  • Takeaways from the game

Northampton and Newport: League Two set-piece specialists

Newport didn't create much from open play on their visit to Sixfields aside from Dom Telford's one on one chance but their long throw-ins created plenty of problems.

Mickey Demetriou and Cameron Norman's long, drilled throws caused problems all night for Northampton, particularly in the first half.

However, it was Northampton's set plays that won them the game.

A wide free-kick from Pinnock was tapped home by Appere in their win over Walsall on Saturday, and it was Pinnock's corner who found Horsfall to give the Cobblers the win against their promotion-chasing opponents.

There is no doubt that both sides will continue to be dangerous from dead-ball scenarios for the rest of the season and they will, without doubt, be crucial in both sides promotion charges.

  • Stand-out player

This was a tough one to call but Mitch Pinnock just edges it.

The winger provided a pinpoint cross from a Northampton corner which found Fraser Horsfall whose goal was the difference between the two sides.

Pinnock created plenty of chances throughout the night for the Cobblers and was their biggest threat.

An honourable mention has to go out to Liam Roberts who was absolutely excellent for the Cobblers in goal and made some fine saves to keep Newport out.