Hatters boss already in contract talks with top scorer Collins

Town boss sees striker staying at Kenilworth Road

Monday, 14th December 2020, 1:59 pm
Updated Tuesday, 15th December 2020, 4:58 pm
James Collins holds the ball up against Preston on Saturday

Luton boss Nathan Jones has confirmed that talks are already underway to keep top scorer James Collins at the club.

The 30-year-old, who bagged his fifth hat-trick for the Hatters during Saturday’s 3-0 victory over Preston North End, is one of a number whose current deal is set to run out in the summer.

Sonny Bradley, Matty Pearson and Dan Potts are just three believed to be entering the final six months of their deals too, as when asked if he was looking to extend Collins' stay at Kenilworth Road, Jones said: “We’re always looking at those things and we’ve had conversations, so all those things are always ongoing.

"We never leave ourselves open, we never get caught on the hop, that’s underway with all those that need to be spoken to.

"We want to move the club forward in all levels, and James is someone we see being here, so that’s something that is underway as we speak.”

It was Jones who snapped up Collins from Crawley Town during his first spell as Luton manager in the summer of 2017, the forward going on to score 68 goals in 155 games so far, to now sit 15th in the club’s all-time scorers list.

He notched 14 goals last term as Town stayed up and has six league strikes this term from 15 outings following Saturday's treble.

When asked if the forward, a full international with the Republic of Ireland now as well, has become an established player in the second tier, Jones added: “I think he did that last season.

"He scored goals at Championship level last year, he’s done that, he's competing regularly at this level, so I think he is establishing himself and he’s an international as well.

"All he’s lacked in the past is probably the opportunity to do that, but in terms of his work-rate, his finishing, his hold-up play, what he does for the team, he’s Championship all day long.”