Hatters boss explains why he didn't make more changes during City draw

Luton chief only raided his bench twice in midweek encounter at Kenilworth Road

By Mike Simmonds
Wednesday, 25th November 2020, 7:38 pm
Updated Wednesday, 25th November 2020, 7:42 pm
George Moncur was one of two changes made by Nathan Jones against Birmingham City on Tuesday night
George Moncur was one of two changes made by Nathan Jones against Birmingham City on Tuesday night

Hatters boss Nathan Jones felt he hadn’t needed to make any extra changes during the 1-1 draw with Birmingham City on Tuesday night.

Despite having five substitutes up his sleeve after the EFL amended their rule recently, Jones only opted to use two, introducing George Moncur on the hour mark and Jordan Clark for the final 20 minutes, Elliot Lee and Harry Cornick making way.

It meant that the likes of James Bree, Joe Morrell and Sam Nombe were left watching on from the sidelines, but with Town pushing for a winner, and creating a number of opportunities, Jones hadn't wanted to alter the rhythm of his side in the closing stages.

The manager said: “I didn't want to upset the shape as I thought we were pretty dominant, and because it’s so late to then come on and impact in a game is difficult.

“I don't just want to make changes for the sake of it, we were in a real good place, creating chances, controlling the game, I didn't really want to.

“Maybe I could have, but where could I have brought them on?

"I changed two of the front three, got our top goalscorer in the centre of the pitch, so we want him on, maybe could have chucked another one on, but we were dominating in midfield.

“There were loads of things I could have done, but we should have won that game, regardless of the changes.”

Jones had made two changes to his starting line-up, with James Collins and Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu recalled, while there was some shifting of positions as well, Glen Rea dropping into centre of defence, with Matty Pearson moving to right back, Martin Cranie missing his first game of the season.

When asked if it was to deal with Lukas Jutkiewicz’s aerial threat, Jones added: “No, not necessarily, Cranie’s played a lot of games, loads and loads of games, and we have a squad here.

“I want to be really solid and defensively strong so that we’re always in games, and that is the case at the minute.

“In terms of dropping Glen in, I wanted to be a bit more expansive in midfield, so we did, we played three footballers in there, not that Glen’s not a footballer, but he’s one that’s really more disciplined.

“I thought Glen Rea was outstanding by the way in terms of how he went about his work, but I thought we played well as a team, so i wouldn't want to single anybody out.

“It was a tactical decision, but we'll do that regularly because we need to keep a freshness, keep an energy, keep everyone fit, we have to do that.”