Ahead of the new League One season, which kicks off in August, we're taking a look at the seven new teams who feature in the third tier next season.
Next, Northampton Town, who were promoted from League Two last season with a brilliant third place finish.
The Cobblers missed out on promotion on the final day of 21/22 when Bristol Rovers overturned an incredible goal swing with a 7-0 win over Scunthorpe. The Cobblers won at Barrow but Rovers went up on goals scored. They made amends this time round when they beat Tranmere to go up.
A Short History
Northampton Town began life simply as Northampton FC, before shrtly after adoptiong 'Town' following objections from the local rugby club. The club played regional league football until 1920, when it was admitted into the Football League. In 1925 the club completed their first ever overseas transfer when they signed William Shaw from Barcelona, and in the same year set a new ground attedance record with over 21,000 watching their FA Cup match with Sunderland.
In the 1960s, Town were promoted three times in five years, reaching their first and only campaign in the First Division in 1965. The next five years then saw three relegations, back to the fourth tier and ever since, they have only ever played in the third or fourth tier of English football.
The 70s were a struggle for the club, except perhaps for the 75/76 season when they gained promotion to the third division, and in 1980 they installed new floodlights at their stadium, but that failed to light up the team as they continued to languish near the bottom of the league for much of the early 80s. A major coup was achieved with the appointment of European Cup winning manager Tony Barton as manager, but the side struggled and he resigned due to health issues midway through the season. His replacement was Graham Carr, father of comedian Alan, who ended the season with an eighth place finnsh for the side.
Carr led the side to the title in 86/87, but he was sacked in 1990 after relegation back to the fourth tier. The 90s continued to be a struggle for the Cobblers, with the club falling into administration in 1992 with debts of £1.6m. This led to the formation of the Northampton Town Supporters Trust who now hold shares in the club and a representative on the board - now that isn't a bad idea... ;)
The club narrowly avoided relegation to the Conference in the mid 90s, first in 1993 when they survived on the final day, before being handed a reprieve in 1994 when they finished bottom of the Football League, only for Kidderminster to be denied promotion due to ground criteria.
1994 saw the club move to Sixfields, where they currently still play. They were promoted to Division Two in 1997 and aside from a relegation two years later, played in the third tier until 2003. They were back in League One by 2006, but could only manage three seasons at that level before a return to League Two.
Five bottom half finishes in six League Two seasons followed, before they lifted the fourth tier title in style in 2015, finishing the season on 99 points as runaway leaders. They were only able to manage two seasons in tier three again, but would return back there in 2020 when they ended a Covid-disrupted season as play-off winners - but we don't talk about that...
They are back in League One this time after a third place finish in League two, four points clear of 4th place with a final day win at Tranmere.
Australian Jon Brady is the man who led the march to League One, having taken over in 2021. Initially a youth coach at Sixfields, Brady took temporary charge after Keith Curle's sacking, and despite relegation at the end of the season he was appointed permanently at the end of the season.
He led the side to an agonising fourth place in 2021/22, losing in the play-offs, before they finished above the dotted last time out in 3rd.
Head to Head
Exeter: 30 wins
Northampton: 56 wins
1-1 | 30/04/22 | Sky Bet League Two
In 1932-33, while on tour, the Cobblers beat the Netherlands national team 4-0!