Exeter City manager Matt Taylor says that will back themselves this weekend against Northampton, in what is a fixture between two promotion rivals in Sky Bet League Two.
Northampton are known for their toughness and physicality, and Matt noted the importance of winning those battles on Saturday.
“It’s key to any game of football,” he said. “We know what Northampton are about, and as much as people talk about their physicality they’ve got some good players too at our level as well. There’s a lot of dangers in their team, but we’re at home and we’ve got to back ourselves. They’re a team in and around us in terms of the league at the moment and a team that we expect to be pushing at the right end of the table.
“So there’s a lot to play for this weekend, and certainly a game that we’ve been looking forward to this week on the back of last weekend.”
Both teams are in good form; Northampton have won five of their last six while City have only lost once at home this season, and Matt is expecting an exciting encounter.
He said: “They’re the inform team in the division at the moment, blowing teams away. But our home form has been strong throughout the season and we’ve got to keep backing ourselves in these home games, producing a performance which gives us a chance of winning the game.
“We’ve got to match their physicality and then play when we can play, I’m sure they’ll do the same, but it will be about who gets to the ball first and who uses the ball wisely and who gains a little bit of control in the game.”
Matt provided an update on the squad and that while Jayden Richardson and Craig Woodman picked up knocks from last night’s win over Oxford United in the Leasing.com Trophy, the rest of the absentees seem to be recovering well.
Matt said: “Nicky Ajose is having his first week of training with the group this week and Lee Holmes is out on the pitch but without the group so he will join them within the next week or two. Lewis Ward seems to be healing in terms of that broken arm, so he’s three or four weeks away.
“They should all come back and strengthen the squad at some stage, it never quite works where everyone is fit at the same time, hence why we need a big strong squad.”
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