Cobblers cruise to third victory on the trot

John-Joe O'Toole is a happy man after putting the Cobblers 2-0 up against Newport (pictures: Kirsty Edmonds)

John-Joe O'Toole is a happy man after putting the Cobblers 2-0 up against Newport (pictures: Kirsty Edmonds)

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The Cobblers made it three wins on the bounce with a confident victory over Newport County at Sixfields.

Ryan Cresswell and John-Joe O’Toole both scored first-half headers before Lawson D’Ath put the seal on the result with a fine solo effort.

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-172834009

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-172834009

Northampton move to 14th in Sky Bet League Two as a result of the victory and are now seven points behind the promotion play-offs.

Town were unchanged for the fourth game in succession and they made a flying start to the game when Marc Richards latched onto a long free-kick from Matt Duke and went down under a heavy challenge from visiting keeper Joe Day.

No penalty was given and Ricky Holmes’ shot on the follow-up was scrambled away for a corner.

From that, Cresswell found room for a shot which Day tipped onto the underside of his crossbar and the loose ball was mopped up by covering defenders.

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-160613009

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-160613009

John-Joe O’Toole had the ball in the back of the net on five minutes but was flagged offside.

Cresswell scored legally eight minutes later when Cresswell thumped home a header from a Joel Byrom corner to give the home side a thoroughly deserved lead.

Newport did not learn their lesson from conceding that goal and, after watching the Cobblers pass the ball around them, then allowed the home side to score a replica second.

This time it was O’Toole who timed his back-post run to perfection to power home a header.

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-160531009

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-160531009

Newport didn’t really threaten at all, a rushed Rene Howe shot and the odd confusion-creating long throw aside, although they did have a sustained period of pressure from corners without forcing Duke into any meaningful action.

There was something of the rope-a-dope about the third goal - after absorbing what Newport had to offer, the Cobblers broke and D’Ath put the seal on the win with a lovely solo effort.

It was a similar strike to Holmes’ the week before, good feet and a classy left-footed finish past the goalkeeper.

Cobblers: Duke; Moloney, Cresswell, Collins, Horwood; Taylor, Byrom; D’Ath, O’Toole, Holmes; Richards

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-172931009

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-172931009

Subs: Toney (for O’Toole 65), Tozer (for Richards 81), Hackett (for Holmes 86)

Not used: Carter, Hackett, Tozer, Snedker, Hornby, Diamond

Newport: Day; Jackson, Yakubu, Jones, Feely, Sandell; Byrne, Chapman, Jeffers; Zebroski, Howe

Subs: Flynn (for Jeffers 58), O’Connor (for Howe 67), Parker (for Feely 79)

Not used: Porter, Minshull, Klukowski, Stephens

Attendance: 4,226

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-173110009

Northampton Town v Newport County NNL-150124-173110009

Away fans: 269