Boothroyd hails cup heroes as hard work pays off

GIANTKILLERS - Alex Nicholls is congratulated after scoring the winner against Cardiff (picture: Kelly Cooper)
GIANTKILLERS - Alex Nicholls is congratulated after scoring the winner against Cardiff (picture: Kelly Cooper)

AIDY BOOTHROYD believes the Capital One Cup victory over Cardiff City will put down a marker not just to the team’s npower League Two rivals but also to the Town players themselves.

Boothroyd’s men came back from 1-0 down to knock out last year’s finalists 2-1, with Dave Artell and Alex Nicholls both scoring on their debuts.

It was an assured display from Northampton, who fell behind to a controversial Heidur Helguson penalty that was the visitors’ only real effort of note.

“It puts down a marker,” said a delighted Boothroyd. “A big marker to us as well. We were very nervous at the start but we grew into the game.

“When you get a result like this what it does is it makes everyone realise what is possible and what can be done with organisation and hard work.

“We’re going to make mistakes but we will learn from them.”

Cardiff were without several big-name players through international call-ups and fielded a team that contained very few household names.

Northampton were only missing goalkeeper Lee Nicholls – his place was taken by second-year scholar Dean Snedker – and they had the edge in every department.

“I enjoyed it, when we saw their team sheet it softened the blow of playing Cardiff,” he said.

“They had some good players out and we had a slow start but I thought we fully deserved to win.”

Helguson’s penalty was awarded after the striker went down under contact from John Johnson in the box, a decision Boothroyd felt the referee got wrong.

“I didn’t think it was a penalty but if you drop off that far, you invite crosses,” he said.

“And if you invite crosses then people are going to put the ball into your box.

“I wouldn’t have given it (the penalty) and I didn’t think it was but thankfully we’ve bounced back from that.”