Jones denies squad size has hindered him so far

Nathan Jones
Nathan Jones

Hatters boss Nathan Jones doesn’t believe that inheriting such a large squad from previous manager John Still has hindered his ability to work out his best team for the remainder of the season.

With over 30 full time professionals at Kenilworth Road, the Luton manager has repeatedly spoken of his desire to cut that number down during the summer.

However, when asked if having so many players available to him as made it harder to find out his preferred 11 on a match day, Jones said: “It could go either way, as you could say you have enough bodies to play different combinations, but I wouldn’t say it’s been more difficult.

“It’s a good squad, a healthy squad, slightly too large as has been reiterated many time. What we need to do is streamline that squad, evaluate what we can move forward with, get some balance to the squad and when we do that we can really do things.

“We’re still evaluating, it’s who plays where and who plays better in what position and what are they going to give me, so it’s all a learning curve every single day.

“With the size of the squad it’s difficult to do that as you can’t see everyone week in week out.

“A lot of players have been brought here by the previous manager, so I don’t know as much as I would like to know before i came in.

“At the moment we’re developing the system, developing our style of play and training methods and so on, and they’re getting used to that.

“But they’ve got used to that quite quickly. I keep reiterating small steps, and so on and think we’re making them and think you’re seeing those as there is a shift in certain elements of how we play.

“But what we have to do is make sure we keep getting results as if we keep getting results, people keep believing.”

Jones also hopes the new regime he is bringing to Kenilworth Road has made the players fitter, with the club appearing to have finally put to bed their worrying trend of conceding late goals that has plagued any hopes of a play-off push this term.

He added: “I hope they’re getting fitter because they’re training at a good intensity. At times, it’s not necessarily fitness though (conceding late on), it’s more a concentration level.

“You look at the top teams and they are some of the fittest teams anyway, but they’ve got good players, concentrate constantly, don’t make errors and that’s what we have to do.

“When we’re on top in games we need to learn to score and then when we’re not, need to learn to shut up shop and those are what we need to be if we want to be a better team.”