Justin happy to be a wing commander for the Hatters

James Justin in action against Blackpool on Saturday
James Justin in action against Blackpool on Saturday

Hatters youngster James Justin relished his opportunity to play as near enough a winger during Saturday’s 2-0 victory at Blackpool.

With Dan Potts missing due to an injury picked up in training, the 18-year-old was back in the side once more, but not in his usual full back role, rather pushed on to the left flank.

As you’re higher up the pitch you get more chances to get assists and goals, so luckily I got one.

James Justin

The role might have been unfamiliar on the day, but it’s something Justin would be happy to continue with if asked by boss Nathan Jones, as he said: “To be honest I quite liked it, coming inside, as I can use my left as well.

“I showed that at (Aston) Villa (in the EFL Cup), but I get told to play wherever and I’ll just fill in.

“It’s a world of difference because you don’t have to worry about getting back as much.

“You still have to get back but it’s obviously more forward thinking so it’s quite fun.

“I’m equally as comfortable on both sides. I prefer the right but still can play left because Sods (Stephen O’Donnell) is in great form as well.”

Boss Jones spoke afterwards how he wanted more assists from his wide players and that’s exactly what Justin provided, taking Alex Gilliead’s pass and crossing for Cameron McGeehan to head past Sam Slocombe.

The teenager continued: “It always comes when you play high up the pitch, but even when you play full back he wants assists and crosses into the box.

“As you’re higher up the pitch you get more chances to get assists and goals, so luckily I got one.

“I get forward and just try to pick people out in the box.”

Striker Jack Marriott was impressed with his team-mate’s contribution too, as he said: “He played left back against Villa and he was very good in that game.

“I wouldn’t say it’s natural but he knows how to do a job there and I think he did more than a job there, I thought he was superb.”

Justin was almost on target himself, only to fluff his lines once and send another curling attempt narrowly wide, but he was more than happy with the overall display, feeling it was Town’s best so far.

He added: “Jack put a lovely ball across after a one-two with Hylts across the box and I’ve absolutely ballooned it into the sky, but it happens. “I feel that’s probably one of our best performances of the season, with the togetherness.

“The clinical edge can maybe improve because we could have scored four or five but we’ve still come out with a 2-0 win, which was excellent.

“It’s a great victory. They’re in great form and we knew about their dangers. They’ve been climbing up the table in the last five weeks so we did well to shut them out and score two ourselves.”