Barkley wants Luton to use Reds draw as a 'stepping stone' for Premier League campaign

Town hit back from 2-0 down to claim a brilliant point
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Luton midfielder Ross Barkley wants his side to use their 2-2 draw at Nottingham Forest on Saturday as a ‘stepping stone; for the remainder of the season.

The Hatters looked down and out at the City Ground with 74 minutes gone, Chris Wood having doubled the Reds’ lead just moments after Barkley was introduced with Andros Townsend and Elijah Adebayo.

However, for the second time this season, Town managed to come back from behind to get a result, Chieodozie Ogbene rifling home on the volley and then Elijah Adebayo doing it all by himself from Tom Lockyer’s lofted ball into the area.

Ross Barkley looks to get away from Nottingham Forest's Ryan Yates at the weekend - pic: Tony Marshall/Getty ImagesRoss Barkley looks to get away from Nottingham Forest's Ryan Yates at the weekend - pic: Tony Marshall/Getty Images
Ross Barkley looks to get away from Nottingham Forest's Ryan Yates at the weekend - pic: Tony Marshall/Getty Images

Speaking afterwards, Barkley said: “It’s a stepping stone for us, but we’ve got to go into training and have the right attitude and then continue.

"It was a great result but we didn’t win, we drew, we got one point, so it’s still not what we wanted.

“Credit to the team and the lads that came on as well, it’s a great team to be a part of.

"We showed character, and that comes from the manager and the backroom staff, that gives the players belief.

"Coming from 2-0 down in the Premier League is really difficult.

"I’m not sure if I’ve been a part of that before, so credit to the group, and hopefully we can build on this as well.”

With Barkley’s introduction meant to spark a revival from the Hatters, those hopes appeared to be dashed when Wood got on the end of Anthony Elanga’s cross to power his downward header beyond the dive of Thomas Kaminski.

On what was going through his mind when seeing the deficit widened, the midfielder continued: “Your attitude changes, you've got nothing at all to lose so let's go for it.

"We got the goal and then got the second goal and then they flicked a switch and started going longer.

"The game changes quickly in the Premier League, so for us it was great, a big game to be a part of.

“For me my attitude doesn't change whether you’re 3-0 up or 2-0 down.

"You’ve got to continue to push and enjoy your football, try and make things happen, get the fans going and that’s what we did."

Having watched from the sidelines for the opening 70 minutes, Barkley felt the visitors needed to take the game to their hosts more, which once they did, is when they eventually got their rewards late on.

He added: “First half not at our best, we needed to put the pressure on higher up the pitch and make things happen.

"They’ve been a good side in the league and been through the experience of it, but we showed character and we kept pushing to the end.

"Credit to the lads that are on the bench as they came on and made a difference and that’s what we need as the Premier League is difficult to play in, so we did what the manager asked of us.

"We conceded silly goals that we can iron out which we have been doing but we just need to get better at that and I know we will.”