Three-goal Ricky Holmes relishing Northampton Town return

George Jones reports

Ricky Holmes is looking forward to returning to his former club Northampton Town on Saturday afternoon and is targeting three points.

The wide-man, who netted a hat-trick for the Addicks against Shrewsbury in midweek, played a key role as the Cobblers stormed to the League Two title last season.

And the 29-year-old says that he wants to taste victory at Sixfields Stadium again, though this time in the colours of Charlton.

“It was one of the first fixtures that I looked for,” he said. “I’ve obviously got fond memories from last season and the season before when I was on loan there.

“I hardly ever lost a game there and everything just seemed to fall into place. Winning promotion in professional football is something that not many people get to experience.

“We were a close group and that is what got us so much success. We’re still in a WhatsApp group together, we still speak every day; they were a great bunch of lads. I’m looking forward to going back.”

Holmes’ spectacular treble - the second of his career - went unrewarded on Tuesday night and he says that he would have swapped it for a positive result. 

He said: “It was all in vain, really. I went into the changing room afterwards and said some words because we’d scored three goals away from home and you expect to take at least a point from the game. Really, you should get all three.

“We have looked back at the goals that we conceded and it just isn’t good enough. We need to be winning these games but we’re a strong group, it’s another good changing room, and we’re together.

“Obviously from a personal point of view it was nice to score a hat-trick but we came away with nothing. I’d rather have got three points with a 1-0, own goal.

“I know that’s a cliché but with where we are at the minute I rather would. They were good strikes but it ended up being for nothing.”

The squad got home from Shrewsbury at around 3.30am on Wednesday and were back in training less than eight hours later.

“We deserved to be in,” said Holmes, who’s side normally have Wednesdays off. “The run we have been on isn’t good enough and we couldn’t have argued if it happened two weeks ago.

“We dissected the game ourselves, there was no involvement from the staff. We went into two groups, watched the first half, analysed it, watched the second half, analysed it and then we put it all together.

“There were some home truths told and we needed that because we expect more from each other.

“We went personal at times and there is no hiding place in football because it is for the world to see. We can’t have people hiding at this stage of the season.”

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