Jones has learnt even more about his Hatters squad during losing run

Luton chief Graeme Jones believes he has learned even more about his squad of players during the recent run of five straight defeats.

Town midfielder Andrew Shinnie on the ball against Leeds at the weekend
Town midfielder Andrew Shinnie on the ball against Leeds at the weekend

After beating Bristol City 3-0 last month, the Hatters have failed to take a single point from clashes with Fulham, Birmingham, Nottingham Forest, Reading and Leeds.

With 11 defeats to their name from 17 matches, it's a far different experience for Town and their fans to the last two seasons, with Luton only losing 14 matches in total on their way to back-to-back promotions.

But Jones insists he can use the experience to find out a great deal on the personnel he has with him, saying: "We don’t want it to be permanent, but it’s unusual, as I think when you’ve been at a winning football club which we have, you get used to that.

“It’s very easy when you’re winning, you don’t find out people’s personalities, or people's character, when you get beat you do.

“Everybody’s together here, from top to bottom, so we need to relish the challenge and go and be courageous like we were on Saturday, give everything we’ve got and if we do, we’ll get something from the game.”

Despite the run of results which has seen Luton drop into the relegation zone, Jones felt his players had still performed to the best of their ability, barring just the one match.

He continued: "They’ve not disappointed me.

"The Reading game aside, before that there were different issues in terms of we’re growing as a football club, growing as individuals in the league, understanding the league.

“I think on Saturday (against Leeds) it was a real reflection of what we’re capable of.

"Now what we have to do is be consistent enough to repeat that level of performance, that’s why I don’t have to talk about budgets anymore, because the players showed me on Saturday that we can compete with the very best.

“That is the biggest challenge that we’re going to get and I’ve faced enough teams.

"I can speak to you about preparing games for Brazil and France and Man City and Liverpool and all those teams.

“The rotation I’ve seen on Saturday, the physicality of Leeds’ performance is as good as you’ll see anywhere.

"Our intelligence impressed me, our tactical knowledge impressed me, our physicality impressed me, our technical ability impressed me.

“I’d rather take that platform forward and use that as a measure of where we are now than anything else.”

Although the season is over a third of the way through now, Jones believes that the Hatters are still adapting to the obvious step up in class.

He added: "We’ve had five defeats on the trot and I think you all know me by now, I don’t hide from things.

"That’s the reality, we’re still coming to terms with the league, certain aspects.

"It isn’t getting harder than Leeds at home, well it is, Leeds away, but it’s not getting any harder than Leeds,

"They test you in every single area, you think about their rotation, you think about they’re chasing a goal, they defend one v one at the back and put nine bodies forward.

"You think about the physicality, you think about the technical ability, you think about their substitutions, (Helder) Costa went for 17m to Wolves or whatever it was.

"We’ve competed and that gives me great, great satisfaction.

"Our players at the weekend showed we can compete for 90 minutes and be level with the best team in the league, so I’d rather take that aspect from the game than anything else."