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Sixfields - Northampton Town FC
Saturday 10th January 2009
Vs Huddersfield Town, League One, 3pm
By John Hubble

Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

With my team Birmingham City having their game at Blackpool called off due to a frosty pitch, I was at a bit of a loss as to what to do. Other fixtures were being called off as the morning progressed so I decided to keep tabs on games at grounds I needed for my 92 which were still on. I was happy that the Northampton game was on as it meant a fairly short trip in cold foggy weather and at a ground I had passed a couple of times over the last few years without having been to a game there.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Sixfields is easy to find as it was only a 45 minute journey down the M6/M1 and there are signs directing you to the ground within a mile or so on leaving the M1 at Junction 16. The parking in the restaurant areas is limited to customers and with the threat of clamping at the one I had initially decided to park in, I thought it best to park in the car park a short walk behind the South Stand for a very reasonable £3.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Having got to the ground at 12.45 I went into the very small club shop to purchase a badge and then went to the ticket office to buy a ticket for £19 which seemed a bit pricey considering Birmingham have been charging £15 for most home games this season. Didnít have to queue as I arrived fairly early and bought a programme as well. I asked where the best place to get a pint from and was told by the guy in the ticket office to go the leisure complex nearby where there were one or two pubs. I walked past the members bar in the West Stand, and as I was on my own asked the doorman if I could go in. To my surprise he let me in which was very good of him, so I settled down to watch the Villa- Albion game on SKY. The usual Carlsberg lager £2.60 a pint, very reasonable.

I got talking to a Northampton fan and he mentioned plans to redevelop and extend the ground which required Council approval which apparently was a touchy subject. Couldnít understand how a club with gates of 5,000 which usually includes a large away following at that number, could justify demanding a 15,000 seater stadium when they canít even fill the one they have. 

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

Sixfields is a very tidy neat compact small ground, which for a town and immediate catchment area of the size of Northampton could probably justify a larger ground. However the attendances they get donít justify it. The West Stand where I sat is the largest of the four stands and is where most of the home noise/support comes from. The away end (the South Stand) was completely full of Huddersfield fans as was part of the East Stand which had been used an overspill. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc..

The first half was pretty even although Huddersfield were the better team in terms of possession. Northampton missed the only real chance of the first half which went narrowly wide. Huddersfield picked up their game in the second half and deservedly went ahead after 64 minutes from a Phil Jevons direct free kick. Northampton then had a man sent off and were fighting a losing battle but to their credit snatched an injury time equalizer through Akinfenwa. The Huddersfield fans were very vocal throughout and the Northampton fans only occasionally offered any vocal encouragement, which really was in keeping with their teams ineffective performance. Had a Meat and potato pie which was very tasty and no real problem with any of the stewards.The usual three fold queue to the toilets at half time which is common at most football grounds.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

No real problems in getting away after the game,took 10 minutes or so to leave the car park and then away towards the M1 and home just after 6.15.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Overall a good day out, it wasnít the greatest game youíll ever see but certainly not the worst Iíve seen on my travels. The fans are very friendly and a ground I would not have any issues with visiting again.
 

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