Chris Wilder named Northampton Town boss

Chris Wilder has been appointed Northampton Town manager on a three-and-a-half-year deal after quitting League Two rivals Oxford United.

The clubs agreed a compensation package for Wilder's departure on Sunday.


"Chris Wilder openly admits he's made a brave decision by leaving promotion-chasing Oxford for relegation-threatened Northampton. But he will have money to spend, a club with bright prospects off-field and confidence in his excellent managerial career so far.

"The deadline has passed for them to bring in new players ahead of tomorrow night's game against Rochdale, but there will certainly be new faces in the team for Saturday. Wilder says he won't raid the U's for players but between him and Alan Knill, they have the contacts to transform the look of Northampton's team. The results need that transformation."

It means the 46-year-old, who will be assisted by Alan Knill, will be leaving the sixth-placed U's for a team 23 points further down the table and bottom of the Football League.

"It was a difficult decision," he told BBC Radio Northampton.

"I think people can look at the job I did at Oxford and say it was a decent job in terms of where it was and where it is now.

"I want Northampton's players to look forward to the challenge. We're in a position where perhaps a lot of people have written them off - it's Northampton and one other going down.

"It's up to me and the players to change that."

Wilder added that will not be looking to recruit players from his former club.

Northampton had been managerless for five weeks following Aidy Boothroyd's sacking on 21 December, with Andy King, who has now left Sixfields, taking caretaker charge.

Cardoza: Wilder stood out 'by miles'

Oxford had rejected an official approach from Northampton on Friday but chairman Ian Lenagan said on Saturday that he understood Wilder had decided to quit, before the former Halifax boss later denied that was the case.

But the U's accepted Wilder's resignation on Sunday after a compensation package was agreed and he will lead out the Cobblers against Rochdale on Tuesday.

Wilder, who was set to be out of contract this summer, will now turn his focus from a promotion campaign to a relegation battle.

One-time Cobbler

Chris Wilder made one appearance for Northampton Town as a player during a loan spell from Sheffield United. The Cobblers lost 1-0 at Colchester United on 10 November, 1998 in an old Division Two game (League One)

Chairman David Cadoza said: "I apologise that it's taken this long. But I'm certainly not apologising that it's taken this long to find the right person.

"A lot of people have tried to bully me, belittle me, force me into a decision before I'm ready to. The majority of the fans, I think, are behind me.

"We'll get the players in to make the difference.

"We've paid significant compensation to Oxford, significant compensation to Aidy Boothroyd and now we're going to sign a few more players. It's a very expensive job.

"I would expect anything up to four or five players coming in."

Wilder's Oxford record

  • Games in charge: 269
  • Won: 121
  • Drawn: 70
  • Lost: 78

Former Sheffield United and Rotherham defender Wilder was named U's boss in 2008 and went on to win promotion from the Conference Premier in the 2009-10 campaign, his first full season in charge.

Since then, Oxford have stabilised as a League Two side, and they are two points off the automatic promotion spots.

Former Scunthorpe manager Knill joins Wilder's backroom team after being sacked by Northampton's relegation rivals Torquay earlier this month.