Sheehan relishes his first Magpies return

Luton Town's Alan Sheehan
Luton Town's Alan Sheehan

Hatters defender Alan Sheehan is relishing his first trip back to former club Notts County as an opposition player on Saturday.

The 30-year-old spent three years at Meadow Lane between June 2011 to June 2014, before returning for another three month loan spell last season, prior to his move to Luton.

I had a good time there, was injury free, enjoyed my football and it’s fair to say we had a good bond and I really enjoyed it.

Alan Sheehan

Sheehan racked up 142 appearances in total for County, scoring 12 times for the club and was hugely popular amongst the supporters, many who hoped he would re-sign for them on leaving Bradford City.

Speaking at the Hatters’ training ground yesterday, Sheehan said: “I’m looking forward to it, I was there for three years and then three months last year, so I enjoyed my time there.

“We were in League One for three years, we had some very good players and the fans were always great to me so I appreciate it a lot.

“I played I think 140-something games, so I had a good time there, was injury free, enjoyed my football and it’s fair to say we had a good bond and I really enjoyed it.

“It’s a club that’s close to me so I’m looking forward to it, but once we step across the white line it’s a normal game.”

On some of his best times with the Magpies, Sheehan continued: “The first season we missed out on the play-offs on goal difference on the last day of the season, so we were disappointed to do that.

“But I think scoring the penno (penalty) last day of the season to keep them up (at Oldham Athletic in May 2014) was one of my major highlights definitely.

“I captained the team for a long time, so a load of highlights and a lot of positive things to look back on.”

Although the management team has changed at County now, with John Sheridan in charge, there were still a few familiar faces for Sheehan, as he said: “I think Alan Smith is still there from when I went back last year, Elliot Hewitt and Hayden Hollis who has been there for a number of years, Scott Loach the keeper.

“There’s a lot of the backroom staff and the owners, so I do know a lot of people there. I’m looking forward to it, but once three o’clock comes, it’s a normal game.”

Despite playing at centre half for the majority of his Luton career, Sheehan is often on set-pieces around the opposing penalty are, scoring a glorious free kick at Hartlepool recently, but admits he will rein in his joy should he net one against his former side.

When asked if he would celebrate, he said: “No, I don’t think I would. People have those clubs that they’ve played for and I suppose out of respect I don’t think I’d celebrate.

“I enjoyed my time there, people were very good to me there, so unless they boo me from start to finish I don’t think I’ll celebrate. Bt you have to score first, so we’ll see if that happens.”

Despite his clear affinity for the club, Sheehan believes he can be enjoying another Luton away win come 4.45pm this weekend against their fellow promotion chasers.

He added: “Definitely we’re confident we can beat most teams on our day, we just need that consistency, putting one or two games on the bounce and we’ll be back where we want to be.

“We’re kind of simmering at the moment, we’re playing well, could have nicked a few of those games, but we’re unbeaten in seven, six in the league and confidence is quite high.

“We’re training hard all week, looking forward to the game, we know where we want to be and it’s a big game on Saturday.”