Hatters chief had hoped to make even more of a statement at Rovers

Hatters boss Nathan Jones couldn't hide his slight disappointment that Luton weren't able to make quite the statement he had hoped for at league leaders Doncaster Rovers yesterday.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 19th February 2017, 9:41 am
Updated Wednesday, 1st March 2017, 9:23 am
Hatters boss Nathan Jones points from the sidelines at Doncaster
Hatters boss Nathan Jones points from the sidelines at Doncaster

The Hatters had moved ahead early in the second period through Jordan Cook’s strike, and looked like becoming the first visiting side to win at the Keepmoat in the league this term.

However, Rovers levelled with 10 minutes to go through sub Alfie May, with Town appealing in vain for a free kick, as they had to ultimately make do with a point.

Speaking afterwards, Jones said: “These (Rovers) are top of the league and have got the accolade of being the best in the league but I loved how my team went about our work.

“We were brave. I felt we could have come here and been comfortable if we matched them and went man-for-man all over, but we didn’t.

“We came here, we were brave and we were excellent. I’m really disappointed because three points would have been a big statement here and we deserved the three points.

“They’re a good side, an excellent side. They’re top of the league for a reason, but we fancy ourselves.

“We think we’re the best side, but we have to back that up and we thought this was going to be a statement.

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“I’m slightly disappointed with the goal but immensely proud of my team and my squad.”

After beating both Crawley and Hartlepool last week, Jones knew it would be a far greater test against the table-toppers, but was delighted with the manner his side went about the game.

He continued: “I’m really proud of my team. I thought we were excellent. We came here with a gameplan and I thought we were absolutely excellent.

“It was an away performance, disciplined as we didn’t want to come out, go gung-ho and press them everywhere because we’ve had big exertions this week.

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“We’ve had six points so we’ve had seven points from nine this week. It has been a wonderful, wonderful haul for us against two tricky home ties, which, in the past we’ve tripped up.

“Then we come to the league leaders and have been excellent. It has been a wonderful week for the football club and we’re delighted with that. At times it won’t always be free-flowing but we’re delighted.”

Hatters were roared on by 1,619 visiting fans throughout the game, with the visiting faithful creating a wonderful atmosphere in the away end, culminating in some superb scenes greeting Cook’s third goal in six matches.

Jones said: “I think we should all be proud of our club today. That’s a fantastic following, 1,600. They were the most vocal, far more vocal than the Doncaster ones.

“Doncaster, all they did was appeal for half-hearted efforts, that’s the only time I heard them.

“Our fans were absolutely wonderful and we gave them a performance to get behind. They should be proud of their club. They are proud of their club because they follow it, they sing and they’re magnificent fans, absolutely magnificent.

“It’s a good day for the football club but it could have been better.”

Meanwhile, club captain Scott Cuthbert, who was superb all afternoon, added: “They were outstanding. We travel unbelievably well, anywhere we go.

“Two and a half, three hours up the motorway to get here and they’ve all travelled up, paid good money.

“We’re disappointed we couldn’t give them three points but I’m sure they’ll all be really proud of the boys as they’ve seen how much this means to us, this league, how much we want to get promoted and finish as high as we can.

“I think they’ve brought into the way the manager wants to play and the way we want to play, it’s just excellent. They travel in their numbers and they were superb.”