Hatters boss eager to point out the positives after defeat at Bramall Lane

Town chief reflects on United loss

By Mike Simmonds
Saturday, 22nd January 2022, 6:03 pm
Updated Sunday, 23rd January 2022, 5:46 pm
Hatters boss Nathan Jones - pic: Gareth Owen
Hatters boss Nathan Jones - pic: Gareth Owen

Luton boss Nathan Jones was quick to point out the positives from the week following this afternoon's 2-0 defeat at Sheffield United.

The Hatters went into the game on the back of successive wins over Bournemouth and Reading, as they managed to get through to half time unscathed at Bramall Lane, frustrating the majority of the near 28,000 crowd in the process.

However, two goals within six minutes from Rhian Brewster and Jack Robinson saw the Blades take a 2-0 lead they never looked like giving away, as Luton also had to play the last half an hour with 10 men, Reece Burke sent off for a professional foul.

Jones said: “They came out of the traps, we didn’t handle that, or we didn’t come out of the traps which we wanted to do.

“Then in 10 minutes the game’s a bit beyond you really and then with the sending off it’s very difficult to peg them back.

“But the message from me to the players is it's been a real good week, a real positive week.

“If someone had said at midday last Saturday, that we would play the league leaders, Sheffield United away, Reading away, we’d take six points, I’d have taken that, absolutely.

“That’s not to say I'm negative as after you do win the first two, then you want to take something from the third.

"But today we had a few who were really jaded because of Reading’s insistence and wanting to play Wednesday night, because it suited them as they had two home games.

“We had to adhere to that and that probably made it a real stretch for us today.

"They’ve had a free week, probably looked a little bit fresher second half, but no excuses, they’ve won the game and overall it's been a decent week so we can't be too down.”

Luton’s gameplan in the first half looked to have worked perfectly, as they quietened the home support, and were inches away from taking the lead in the closing stages, Sonny Bradley's header from Henri Lansbury's free kick adjudged offside.

Jones added: “It’s marginal, I could complain, but it’s nothing really.

“It’s fifty-fifty, so I could have an argument, but that’s not the changing point today.

“We didn't start the second half very well and normally that's us, but this is a good place, fantastic football club and with the squad they’ve got, they were always going to cause the odd problem.

“The first goal’s a poor one, second one is really poor as a set-play so just do the basics which we have done really well lately.

“That’s the one as at 1-0 you always have an opportunity of just nicking something, but today we looked a little bit flat.

“We looked less energetic that we have and that’s understandable as to go to 94, five, six minutes against Bournemouth and win the game, then to go to Reading on Wednesday and put in the shift we did, then to have to travel here with no training, it's a big ask, the third game in a week.

“That’s a big ask and these are arguably the best squad in the Championship, so to do it against them, is tough.”