Jodi Jones scores his first senior City goal to give the Sky Blues all three points in the Checkatrade Trophy...
The Sky Blues’ remain unbeaten at home after a 3-1 victory against Northampton in the Checkatrade Trophy - safely securing their passage to the knock-out rounds.
After success on the road at the weekend, the Sky Blues were looking for more of the same on home turf in the Checkatrade Trophy. It took all of 24 seconds for Coventry to take the lead; a mazy run started on the half way line by Daniel Agyei, who took on five men to give himself a sight of goal and he slotted the ball past Cobblers' keeper David Cornell.
But the perfect start looked to have got away when Northampton hit back a minute later. JJ Hooper, found some space on the left flank and his teasing cross was edged in by Cobblers' skipper Marc Richards.
Determined not to let the equaliser dampen the home side’s spirit, Jodi Jones took the attack back to Northampton. In similar fashion to Aygei’s run minutes earlier, Jones brilliantly danced through the away side’s defence and had the finish to match, putting the Sky Blues back ahead with his first senior goal.
In an end-to-end opening 15 minutes, it was Northampton’s turn to come forward, Kenji Gorre cut in from the left and the winger curled his right-footed shot just wide of Lee Burge’s post. Up the other end, Jones was causing all sorts of problems and nearly had his second goal of the game, beating es-Sky Blue Aaron Phillips and trying to dink the keeper, but his effort was well saved.
Having seen his teammates' success running directly at goal, Lewis Page was next to try his luck, stepping out of defence. From the half way line, he soon found himself 25 yards out and fired a shot which flew just wide.
With confidence flowing through the side the Sky Blues controlled the game, going into half time ahead, with a performance that must have pleased caretaker Manager Mark Venus.
The second half started with Coventry on the front foot, it took just three minutes for midfielder Vladimir Gadzhev to hit a shot towards the top corner only to be stopped by a diving Cornell. On the hour mark a Northampton freekick half cleared, dropped to half time substitute, Harry Beautyman. Not wanting to be outdone by his opposite number’s saves, Burge acrobatically tipped over Beautyman’s volley keeping the Sky Blues ahead.
Five minutes later Venus made his first change of the evening introducing Ruben Lameiras for Gadzhev. With a point to prove and in the typical vein of an 'impact sub', a wonderful cross field through ball from Chris McCann found the Portuguese winger and he lofted the ball over the keeper into the net, giving Coventry a two goal advantage under a minute after coming on.
Northampton nearly clawed one back with five minutes to go when Sam Hoskins’ cross fell nicely to McDonald but he couldn’t keep his effort under the bar.
A professional second half display saw Coventry have the lion share of possession and see out the victory recording back-to-back wins and setting up a table topping decider against Wycombe in the final group match.
Attendance: 2,085 (153)
Coventry City: Burge (GK), Willis (C), Turnbull, Sterry, Page (Ricketts 69'), Gadzhev (Lameiras 64'), McCann, Bigirimana, Sordell, Jones, Agyei (Tudgay 80').
Subs: Addai (GK), Harries, Stevenson, Dev. Kelly-Evans.
Northampton Town: Cornell (GK), Buchanan, Richards (C) (Hoskins 66'), Gorre, McCourt, Phillips, Sonupe (Beautyman 45' D'Ath 80'), O'Toole, Nyatanga, McDonald, Hooper.
Subs: Smith (GK), Moloney, Byrom, Iaciofano.