Missing play-offs was tough to take for O’Donnell

Stephen O'Donnell applauds the Town fans after defeat to Blackpool in the play-offs
Stephen O'Donnell applauds the Town fans after defeat to Blackpool in the play-offs

Not featuring in either of the League Two play-off semi-final matches against Blackpool was a bitter pill to swallow for departing Luton defender Stephen O’Donnell.

The 25-year-old could only watch from the substitutes bench when Luton went down 3-2 at Bloomfield Road and then suffer a heartbreaking exit, held 3-3 in front of their own fans on Tuesday night.

I hope it was a hard decision for the manager because I felt I had done everything I could to be selected for them.

Stephen O’Donnell

O’Donnell said: “Not playing in those two semi-finals was difficult, as I thought I would have had an impact in them. I hope it was a hard decision for the manager because I felt I had done everything I could to be selected for them.

“Just watching on and the manner in which we lost was difficult.

“I was just disappointed that as a club we didn’t get promoted and individually, not to play in those big games.

“I want to be involved every week, I missed five training sessions this year, so it shows how often I’m out there, I’m wanting to do well, wanting to improve. I want to be part of the big games and that’s why we play football.

“I felt the Villa game the Leeds game, the Stoke game, all games that I played, I felt I played well in.

“It would have been nice, a full house Kenilworth Road, a great atmosphere, but that was a sad way to leave, because I would have loved to have a day out at Wembley.

“With conceding goals I might have been playing, so I would have loved to have been part of it and just disappointed we didn’t manage to get it.”

O’Donnell joined Town in the summer of 2015, his first venture south after stints with Celtic and then Partick Thistle, as whether he will return north of the border in his search for a new club, he added: “I certainly would like to stay in England if the right offer came along, the right club, the right I place I felt I could do well at.

“I learned a lot from being at Luton and what I value and need as a player, and I think I was given that under Nathan Jones and didn’t manage to pay it back.

“I know what I’m looking for and if the right club comes along, whether it be in Scotland or England, or anywhere else to be honest, I’ll be definitely be interested.

“I just hope that my agent comes up with a couple of good moves. I’m confident I will be fine, I will be fine, I’ve played enough games, I’m 25, but it doesn’t it stop you worrying.

“Until I sign somewhere you will always have the pressure, so you just hope you’re fit and you’re well to find a club.”