Banton ready to improve after penning new Luton deal
Hatters striker Zane Banton is ready to take the required steps to make his career at Kenilworth Road a successful one.
After impressing during every one of his four appearances he made under Town boss Nathan Jones towards the back end of last season, Banton was rewarded with a new one-year contract.
The forward, who made his debut as a 17-year-old back in 2013, has now been given certain aspects of his game to work on and continue his improvement at a club he never wanted to leave.
Banton said: “I always wanted to stay at Luton whether there was interest or not from elsewhere, especially after Nathan Jones took over.
“I wanted to stay and break into the first team, other clubs weren’t really concerning me too much.
“It was a tough half of the season, not the end to the year but the beginning of the year, being out on loan again.
“But since Nathan came in, the season got a lot better and when I was doing well at first when he came in, I knew that wasn’t really enough.
“I knew I needed to not just show in training, but show when I got my chances on the pitch that I’m capable of playing well in League Two.
“Being young, obviously I knew if I did that I’d have a good chance of getting a new contract and that’s what I’ve done so I’m happy with it.
“We had a chat about me signing my contract and what he feels I need to improve on which I’ll keep between me and him, but he thinks there’s definitely a couple of things I can improve on, and he’s also given me reasons how I can improve on them.
“He hasn’t just told me, he’s give me reasons how I can improve and he said if I can do that then I’ve got the best chance of making the career for myself a really good one.”
The young striker has been hugely impressed with the way his introduction into the side has been handled by Jones too, despite not featuring as quickly as he would have liked when named in the match day squad.
He continued: “I remember when he put me on the bench a couple of times, I think it was three times in a row, and not that I was getting wound up, I was happy I was on the bench, but you do get a bit frustrated as I was wondering if I was actually going to come on.
“He said to me, ‘don’t worry, if you keep training how you’re training and be patient, then you will eventually get your chance to come on and show what you can do,’ and then I knew he would stick to that as he doesn’t just say it, he backs up those words
“He stuck to it and I came on and then came on another three times, sometimes for a good amount of time as well, so I was pleased with that.”
Banton wasn’t just being thrown on for the final minutes with the result done and dusted too, particularly late on against Oxford with the game delicately poised at 3-2 to Luton.
He said: “That was a very good experience coming on there and for Nathan to trust me in a game like Oxford where we’re one goal ahead, defending a lead.
“It’s a different sort of game when your back’s up against the wall and you’re coming on as sub.
“You want to keep concentrating and not making mistakes, so it was a good learning curve in that game and I was delighted, as I thought I did well too.”
Although he has still only made a handful of cameos, Banton has never looked out of place in the Football League and always had the belief that would be the case.
He added: “I wouldn’t say I was surprised because I thought for about two years now I’m capable of playing in League Two, but you have to have patience.
“I wasn’t surprised the fact that I did well, but surprised maybe how much support I got, not just from the fans but everyone around the club.”