Northampton

Northampton Town: Hundreds welcome back promoted Cobblers

Cobblers fans
Image caption At least 200 fans turned up to see Northampton Town's players and staff home

Hundreds of Northampton Town supporters gathered to welcome the team home following their League Two promotion play-off final win.

The Cobblers beat Exeter City 4-0 at Wembley to seal their return to League One following relegation in 2018.

Coronavirus restrictions meant there were no fans at the match, but at least 200 were outside Sixfields Stadium when the team returned at about 00:45 BST.

The club's last win at Wembley was a play-off final against Swansea in 1997.

"We have done the town so proud," said supporter Keeley Wilson-Townsend.

"We looked fit as butchers' dogs, it was just immense.

"I always believed we were going to do it. It's one of the most profound moments in our history."

Image caption The coaches arrived at about 00:45 BST and were mobbed by supporters
Image caption It was Northampton's first victory at Wembley since 1997
Image caption The club was last a League One side in 2018

Fans waved flags and set off claret flares outside the ground.

They surrounded two coaches carrying players back from Wembley as they arrived in Northampton.

Northamptonshire Police attended and placed a temporary closure on Edgar Mobbs Way.

Image caption There were cheers for players as they stepped off the coaches

It was Northampton's fourth appearance in a Wembley play-off final, but only their second victory since success in the same League Two final against Swansea City in May 1997.

James Whiting, the club's chief executive said: "It was an incredible evening, but it was heartbreaking not to have the fans with us [at the game].

"There is a massive unity in the club, from the supporters but also the groundsman, the cleaners, absolutely everyone in the club."

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