Cox satisfied as Poppies make a point

Paul Cox was left satisfied by what he saw after Kettering Town drew 0-0 with title contenders York City at Latimer Park.

Saturday, 7th December 2019, 11:36 pm
Updated Sunday, 8th December 2019, 6:37 am
Paul Cox applauds the Kettering Town fans after the goalless draw with York City. Picture by Peter Short

A big game at both ends of the Vanarama National League North ultimately ended in stalemate, although it was the Poppies who were left ruing the best of the chances.

Aaron O’Connor was denied by a fine save from Peter Jameson in the first half while the best chance of the game fell to Luke Graham who was left one-on-one with the York goalkeeper following a free-kick but shot wide of the target.

In the end, however, it was another point on the board and an eighth game in all competitions without defeat since Cox took charge of the club.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

And the Poppies boss said: “I thought we did okay, you can see why York are up there because they have good players.

“But, after the first 20 minutes where we sat off them and admired them, we created some really good chances and were a bit unlucky not to come in maybe 1-0 or 2-0 up.

“The second half was a bit end-to-end but I thought we grew stronger as they game went on.

“You always have to be careful because York have players who can always create something but our players have shown another part of our mindset that we are developing.

“There are still parts of our game that can improve, we sometimes gave the ball away a bit cheaply, but I am being a little bit picky with that.

“We battled, we worked hard and we showed a great attitude. We have tried to win the game and I have to give the boys credit.

“When we look at the highlights we may well rue a few chances we could have been a bit more ruthless with but we will keep going.”

The goalless draw made it two clean sheets in a row for Cox’s team following another 0-0 draw at Curzon Ashton last Monday night.

And Cox praised his players for the way they have adapted to a change of formation in the last two matches.

“We changed our shape at Curzon Ashton to the three centre-backs and when you’ve only got two days to train with the lads to try to implement a different shape and learn a different philosophy, it is hard,” he added.

“But they have taken it on board. Going back to Curzon, we changed from a 3-5-2 to a 4-2-3-1 and back to a 3-5-2 which shows the players can adapt and that’s fantastic at this stage.

“They looked comfortable in the shape and it was good to get the wing-backs forward.

“We are progressing in the right way and that’s all we can ask from these boys at the moment.”

The Poppies will now switch their focus to the Buildbase FA Trophy as they gear up for a first-round clash at Northern Premier League side FC United of Manchester next weekend.