Edwards frustrated as Town have to change winter break plans due to FA Cup replay

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Luton will still look to go away if schedule allows it

Hatters boss Rob Edwards was left frustrated that Town will now have to change their winter break plans after yesterday’s FA Cup third round stalemate with Bolton Wanderers.

With the next round of Premier League games split across two weekends, it would have allowed all top flight sides to have a week off following what had been a hectic December schedule. Luton were due to go to Burnley on Monday night which would have then given them 15 days before their next league contest, a home match against Brighton & Hove Albion on Tuesday, January 30, although that would have been reduced had they beaten the Trotters, with the FA Cup fourth round scheduled for the weekend of January 27/28.

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Town had been looking to go abroad for a training camp in that time, but that is now up in the air due to needing to fit in their replay against the Trotters on either Tuesday or Wednesday next week, while their trip to Turf Moor has been brought forward to this Friday night. They might still be able to head to sunnier climes, but on those plans being impacted, Edwards said: “It is frustrating. Our plan was to go away and get a little bit of warm weather stuff after Burnley, that was the plan, now it will have to be after the replay. That is still the plan at the moment, but we’ll have to see on scheduling and what day the game is going to be.

Chiedozie Ogbene in possession against Bolton Wanderers - pic: Liam SmithChiedozie Ogbene in possession against Bolton Wanderers - pic: Liam Smith
Chiedozie Ogbene in possession against Bolton Wanderers - pic: Liam Smith

"It chucks another game in for us, there’s no other way. I can’t moan about it or bleat about it, because the lads will hear it and they’ll feel sorry for themselves as well. We can’t think negatively, we’re still in the competition, that’s what I wanted and compared to a lot of Premier League teams and European ones, we’re not playing as many games as them this year. Apart from Marvelous (Nakamba) and Tom Lockyer who are longer term absentees, we’ve got a fully fit group now as well, so we’ve got the numbers to cope.”

With Town back in action on Friday at relegation rivals Burnley, the hosts will go into the crucial contest having had an extra few days off as they lost their FA Cup clash at Tottenham on Friday night. There were no complaints from Edwards though who fully expects his side to be ready, adding: “The Burnley game is really tough for us anyway. It’s an important game for both teams, there’s enough time for us to recover so there’s no excuses from my end. We’re aware of the situation, of what the schedule could have been, so that’s fine.”