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Match Reports

REPORT: Sky Blues draw 1-1 with Northampton Town on Pre-Season tour

12 July 2019

Coventry City drew 1-1 with Northampton Town at the Pinatar Arena on Friday evening to complete the Sky Blues tour to Spain.

In a game where Mark Robins’ side largely dominated possession, Jamie Allen scored the only City goal shortly after the break, equalising a Northampton goal in the first half from Matty Smith.

The Sky Blues again chose different sides for each half, only affected by Sam McCallum missing out having picked up a knock, while Jonny Ngandu also missed out though injury, meaning Brandon Mason completed 70 minutes.

In an opening period where both sides took turns in keeping the ball and adapting to conditions, Northampton drew the first effort of the game, Joe Martin's effort from 20 yards out being deflected wide for a corner, which was cleared by the Sky Blues defence.

City’s first chance came ten minutes later, with 22 minutes on the clock. Fankaty Dabo and Gervane Kastaneer kept possession on the right, with the latter playing it into Jordan Shipley, with his shot from 30 yards out flying over the bar. 0-0

After a water break with around half an hour gone, City got on the front foot right away. Amadou Bakayoko picked up the ball deep in the Northampton half, drove forward and played a delicate through ball to Jordy Hiwula, who couldn’t quite reach the pass.

Bakayoko features again in the Sky Blues next chance, with his effort ruled out by the linesman. Dabo cut inside on the right channel 30 yards out, and played a great floated cross to the backpost. The City striker met the ball with his head to draw a reaction save from Arnold in the Northampton goal, with Bakayoko converting the rebound. However, his strike was ruled out for offside.

Marko Marosi was quiet in goal up until the 36th minute, when he stood up well when one-on-one with Northampton marksman Williams to stop the striker opening the scoring.

However, in the 42nd minute Northampton would find the break through. Harry Smith was on the right side of a tight offside call, and wall clear through on goal 30 yards out. He ran through and slotted the ball past Marosi to put The Cobblers ahead – a lead they would take into the break.

At half-time there were multiple changes, as the Sky Blues sought to get minutes into the legs of the squad.

It was one of the players introduced at the break, Jamie Allen, who found the net for Mark Robins men and bring the scores level.

A poor clearance from the Northampton keeper fell straight to Zain Westbrooke. Rather than rushing a shot away, Westbrooke played an intelligent ball to the feet of Allen inside the box. The diminutive midfielder fainted to shoot, fooling the Keeper who he took the ball away from. With defenders getting back onto the line, Allen hit a powerful shot into the net from 12 yards out to make it 1-1.

In an increasingly physical encounter, it was City who were now on top. Conor Chaplin hit a rasping shot from 25 yards out which was well saved by Arnold, while the runs of Wesley Jobello on the Sky Blues right were causing problems for Northampton.

Fellow Frenchman Max Biamou was the next to test the Northampton goalkeeper. Biamou stole possession well from the opposition left-back, before driving towards the goal. He hit a low shot 25 yards from goal which the Northampton keeper saved low to his left, with Conor Chaplin hitting the rebound over the bar.

In the 69th minute, Jobello broke down the right again. A good cross was met well by Chaplin on the edge of the box, but again the Northampton goalie was equal to another Sky Blues effort. Jobello was next the provider for Biamou in the 75th minute, but a header from the City striker went just wide from 12 yards out.

Having been a physical and competitive contest throughout, the last ten minutes of the game happened largely without event or incident, with the full-time whistle drawing a close to a good test for Mark Robins’ side and another important 90 minutes completed for the squad.

The Sky Blues depart Spain on Saturday evening, back at Ryton on Monday as preparations for the 2019/20 season continue.

CCFC First Half XI: Marosi (GK), Dabo, Williams, McFadzean, Mason, Bayliss, Eccles, Shipley, Kastaneer, Hiwula, Bakayoko.

CCFC Second Half XI: Wilson (GK), Pask, Hyam, Rose, Mason (Bapaga, 70), Kelly, Allen, Westbrooke, Jobello, Chaplin, Biamou.

Northampton XI: Steven Arnold (GK), Jordan Turnbull, Joe Martin, Joe BUNNEY, Chris Lines, Ryan Watson, Nicky Adams, Shaun McWilliams, Matt Warburton, Andy Williams, Harry Smith.

Subs: Jay Williams, Ryan Hughes, Morgan Roberts, Scott Pollock, Sam Hoskins, Vadaine Oliver, Curtis Yelbi.


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