Norris the last-gasp hero as Cobblers beat leaders

GET IN THERE! - Luke Norris runs away to celebrate his last-gasp winner against Fleetwood (Pictures: Kelly Cooper)
GET IN THERE! - Luke Norris runs away to celebrate his last-gasp winner against Fleetwood (Pictures: Kelly Cooper)

Luke Norris continued his rich goalscoring form with a dramatic injury-time winner as the Cobblers toppled league leaders Fleetwood at Sixfields.

The on-loan Brentford striker whipped home a superb free-kick in the first minute of stoppage time for his fifth goal in six games to secure a dramatic 1-0 win.

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Town had enjoyed the better of the exchanges in the preceding 90 minutes but it looked as though honours would end even.

But Norris, who was a livewire presence throughout the game, had other ideas and curled home a superb winner to give Northampton their second successive win.

A rare misjudgement by Ryan Cresswell gave Jacob Blyth the game’s first sight of goal, the striker measuring a right-footed volley from 35 yards that flew wide of the target on the left side.

Seconds later, David Ball struck the outside of the woodwork with an excellent swivel and volley after Gareth Evans had sent in a low cross from the right wing.

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

A neat Ricky Ravenhill pass sent Norris away down the right and his fizzed cross was diverted narrowly over his own crossbar by left-back Charlie Taylor.

Town’s tactical set-up was changed at half-time when Chris Hackett, who looked to have injured his groin during the first half, was replaced by Stuart Dallas.

It was his break down the right that led to a very good chance for Blyth, who headed Joe Widdowson’s cross powerfully down but not over the line as Scott Davies stepped back to claim it.

The game livened up in the second half as the tired legs on both sides created pockets of space from which attacks were generated.

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Fleetwood substitute Matty Blair saw an effort well held by Duke and Davies went low to repel a Norris drive.

The Brentford loanees both saw shocks blocked in the final 10 minutes, although Norris might have been better off passing that attempting to score from his position, a tight angle on the right side.

It could be argued that he had used up all of his opportunities when the referee - who had a bizarre game - awarded a free-kick right on the edge of the box for an offence nobody else saw.

But Norris showed nerves of steel and a perfect technique to whip his shot over the wall and into the top corner and unglue the Sixfields crowd.

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Cobblers: Duke, Tozer, Reid, Doumbe, Widdowson, Hackett, Ravenhill, Ferdinand, Emerton, Blyth, Norris

Subs: Dallas (for Hackett 46), Demontagnac (for Emerton, 66), Morris (for Norris 90)

Not used: Carter, Hooper, Deegan, McNamara

Fleetwood: Davies, McLaughlin, Pond, Cresswell, Taylor, Evans, Schumacher, Murdoch, Hughes, Sarcevic, Ball

Subs: Parkin (for Ball 34), Blair (for Murdoch 56), Brown (for Evans, 76)

Not used: Roberts, Hogan, Dieseruvwe, Lucas

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Noethampton Town V Fleetwood Town

Attendance: 4,076

Away fans: 144