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League Two

Northampton Town manager Chris Wilder happy with a point

1 March 2014

Northampton Town manager Chris Wilder was full of praise for his side, even if they were unable to make it three wins on the bounce following the 0-0 stalemate with Bristol Rovers.

The struggling Cobblers closed the gap on the teams above them to just four points as they made it three games unbeaten in their mini-revival. Both sides had more than enough chances to take all three points but the experienced Matt Duke and his opposite number Steve Mildenhall were not to be beaten as both goalkeepers pulled off some impressive saves.

Northampton went into the game after making it back-to-back wins for only second time this season which took them off the bottom of the table.

Wilder said: "Maybe a draw was a fair result - we could have won it and we could have lost it. They were dangerous on the counter-attack and it became more like a basketball game in the second half.

"The players put in an unbelievable shift on Tuesday against Southend and I thought we just looked a bit jaded. We lacked a bit of quality in the final third and I think that was down to tiredness.

"The first goal is always important and I thought we were going to get it but we can still be pleased with our day's work, if you cannot win then you must not lose. The players have given me, the staff, the club and the supporters everything this week with two wins and a draw.

"In the bigger picture although I'm happy to see the supporters enjoying it more, there are no congratulations from me for the players yet, I stressed that before the game. We've got a free week now and we can prepare well for next Saturday's game."

Wilder also picked out Duke for special praise, adding: "Matt Duke showed just how good a keeper he is with that performance. He went through a tough spell when I first arrived but it shows the stature of the man that he got through it. He's not had a lot to do in the last two games but, when he needed to, he produced some quality saves."

Rovers extended their unbeaten run to five games and boss John Ward was happy to pick up another point.

He said: "It's been a big week for us and we've just played two form teams and both of them away from home so we're happy to remain unbeaten and to add another point to our haul.

"That's a good point for us because we've worked extremely hard in our three games this week and I'm sure Northampton will say the same about their fixtures.

"Both teams were trying to win it in the second half and it seemed like in the first half that the main thing both teams were focusing on was not conceding the first goal. We tried to lift it at half-time and I think both teams did that; if we'd been chatting about a 2-2 draw everyone would be saying what a good game it was.

"Who knows if a draw was the right result? Their keeper made a blinding save and Tom Parkes had a header cleared off the line so maybe we've come closer."


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