Hatters boss hails 'outstanding' Downes

Flynn Downes on his debut for the Hatters
Flynn Downes on his debut for the Hatters

Hatters boss Nathan Jones heaped praise on his deadline day signing from Ipswich Town Flynn Downes as he enjoyed a starring role in yesterday’s 1-0 win over Exeter City.

The 19-year-old impressed hugely from the off with his composure and confidence when in possession, very rarely giving the ball away, while demonstrated an eagerness to do the other side of the game too, winning his fair share of tackles throughout.

On the performance of the teenager, who is on loan until the end of the season, Jones said: “He was outstanding. It’s as if he lives here in terms of the way he went about the pitch, the confidence he played with, the security and everything he had.

“But we kind of knew what we were getting, we just hoped he transforms that form that he’s had for Ipswich in here and he was absolutely outstanding, he really was.

“He will be minimum Championship player and we’re just so happy that Mick (McCarthy) and Ipswich had decided to entrust us with him here.

"Because his development, it will continue here his development and we’ll hand him back as a Championship player.”

Downes started alongside fellow deadline day acquisition Jake Jervis, who showed his pace going forward and his willingness to shoot as well, coming close with a number of attempts.

Jones continued: “He was similar to Harry (Cornick), as the way we play, I thought me moved the ball wonderfully well, first half and second half.

"We worked it into great situations and then we just couldn’t find that little bit of quality, that little bit of guile for most of it Jake lacked that today, just that bit of composure in the final third.

"But he probably wanted to do well, he's here, on his debut, and a club he’s waited for to sign because we had a word with him in the summer.

"So he’ll get better as he gets stronger and fitter and sharper and gets in our environment a little bit more, so that’s good.”

Lloyd Jones made it three new faces who finished the game, on in the final 10 minutes to cope with any aerial threat the Grecians possessed, as Jones admitted he had been tempted to start all three, adding: It was a decision, because with the size he’s got and with (Jayden) Stockley, we know their principal threat is going into Stockley and playing off him.

"He caused us problems down there, first half, so we had to think about it, but bringing three new signings into it, that hadn’t played as much football as we’d have liked would have been a gamble, so we bought the two in."