Northampton boss Aidy Boothroyd refused to be downbeat after a late goal saw his ten-man team go down 1-0 at Fleetwood.
The Cobblers looked to have weathered the storm, only to be hit by a sucker-punch in the form of Andy Mangan's injury time header.
Daniel East was sent off for the visitors after 29 minutes, earning himself a second yellow card for his challenge on Fleetwood's Jamie McGuire.
Boothroyd said: "I thought we should never have had a man off in the first place, but the last thing anybody wants to hear is someone moan about referees.
"We were absolutely fantastic defensively but to get done from a long throw in injury time is very disappointing.
"They are a decent side, we knew it would be difficult but, for much of the time we limited them to long range shots. With eleven men on the pitch it would have been a terrific advert for the division."
Fleetwood manager Micky Mellon said: "We played some really good football.
"I was delighted all the way through with the way we passed the ball and created numerous chances.
"It's always difficult to play against two banks of four so to come out at the end and get a result I'm very pleased.
"It's been a fantastic day for us. I'm delighted where we are but we're not good enough to not take it one game at a time."