Still blasts ‘abysmal’ Hatters

John Still

John Still

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Hatters boss John Still blasted his side’s second half display as they were defeated 2-1 by Crawley Town yesterday.

Cameron McGeehan’s seventh goal of the campaign put the visitors in front as they controlled the opening period.

“Second half I thought was probably the worst 45 minutes of the season.”

John Still

However, Luton never got going after that and once Rhys Murphy levelled, there was a horrid inevitability about Matt Harrold’s late winner.

Still said: “First half I thought we were really good, I thought we played really well, I was really pleased.

“Second half I thought was probably the worst 45 minutes of the season. Regardless of the results we’ve had earlier, we didn’t pass it well enough, we didn’t defend well enough.

“Jack (Marriott) had a chance to make it 2-0 and it wasn’t good up until then, but it actually got a little bit worse.

“The passing was abysmal and it was good in the first half and it’s been good, but it wasn’t good. We never really got it going in the second half at all.

“I thought we invited pressure because we fouled too much and gave away too many free kicks. They’re a big side, they want to get the ball in the box, I said to them before the game and said to them at half time, no free kicks, no free kicks, but we gave away too many free kicks.

“Every time they came forward and got a free kick, they regained the ball and we found it hard to get out and when we did get a touch on the ball, didn’t pass it well enough.

“We were slow out of the blocks in the second half, when we did get on the ball, we weren’t finding the right passes. We were going long when we should have been going short and were playing short when we should have been playing longer and we never had the cohesion about us for that 45 minutes.”

When asked he felt there was such a difference between both halves, Still couldn’t put his finger on a reason why.

He continued: “I don’t know, because nothing changed for us, everything was the same.

“We kept the same formation and we felt comfortable. We said at half time, it was Kevin Dearden actually, the only way they’re going to come back into this if we get sloppy with our passing and give them an incentive and give away too many restarts and we did both.

“It’s really really weird, as the coaching staff and myself have said this has been the best weeks training we’ve had.

“We have moved the ball absolutely unbelievably in training, it’s been brilliant, it’s been great to watch and we produced that performance, so there you are.”

Meanwhile, Still held a longer than usual huddle afterwards, telling his players in no uncertain times his feelings on their performance.

On what was said, the boss added: “It was longer because we think we made it really, really clear at half time what could trip us up and it disappointed me.

“Everyone fouls, that’s football, but we gave away too many fouls and invited pressure and we said to them it’s only our sloppy passing that will allow them to get the ball back.

“It was crisp in the first half, very crisp and the disappointing thing for me was that I didn’t think they took heed of that.

“Players are players and some players are not going to play well, but we probably had nine players second half that never played to the level that we would expect them to.”