Luton call for a team meeting to discuss red cards

Hatters chief Nathan Jones revealed he has held a meeting with the players today in a bid to cut out the number of red cards picked up this season.

Hatters boss Nathan Jones
Hatters boss Nathan Jones

Johnny Mullins’ dismissal on Saturday, his second of the campaign, was the eighth time that Luton have finished a game with 10 men after Danny Hylton, Glen Rea, Jordan Cook, Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu, Dan Potts and Alan Sheehan have all seen red for two bookable offences too.

Speaking at his press conference, Jones said: “We’ve had a meeting today about it and it’s just the diligence, because a lot of them are harsh.

“There were certain things in the game the other day that were a lot harsher than some of the things that went on, so it has to be the diligence of everyone involved in making decisions on the football pitch.

“If we all endeavour to make enough of the right ones, then I don’t think we would have had as many as we have had. It’s a diligence needed from everyone concerned, because we’re not a dirty side.

“That’s probably the only straight one we’ve had red in terms of being a bad challenge, deemed as a bad challenge because the others have been two bookings and the accumulations.

“Now at times it’s very difficult to fathom when a booking’s going to come out and when it’s not because of stages of games. But I want them to have a diligence about them because they’re a good group, an honest group, not a malicious group and they’re not an ill-disciplined group in any part of their lives.

“It’s just when they go on the pitch we’ve accumulated a few little things and that’s been a little bit difficult.”

Although scathing about the officials after 1-1 draw with Wycombe on Saturday, Jones admitted he did get to have a word with referee Mark Heywood about his handling of the game.

He added: “I spoke to the referee, but what I said will have to remain private, because that’s a conversation that we have to keep within those four walls.

“I’ve reviewed his performance and I’m just disappointed with certain aspects of how Wycombe went about certain things.

“That was a gameplan they had and credit to them. I just felt there were certain elements in the game that could have been avoided, but it’s one of those things.

“It’s a difficult job being an official, in the heat of things. But having looked back, some of the things were difficult to take when I saw them on a replay, although that’s part of parcel of football.”