Hatters boss revels in Adebayo's 'meteoric' rise since joining Luton

Town attacker has made a huge impression on the Championship already

By Mike Simmonds
Thursday, 30th December 2021, 9:11 am
Updated Thursday, 30th December 2021, 9:12 am
Town forward Elijah Adebayo
Town forward Elijah Adebayo

Town boss Nathan Jones has labelled striker Elijah Adebayo’s rise since moving to the Hatters as ‘meteoric’.

The 23-year, who hasn’t even been at Kenilworth Road for 11 months yet having signed from League Two Walsall at the end of the January transfer window, has taken to the Championship with such an ease that there are already reports of Premier League clubs casting their eye over Luton's leading marksman.

Adebayo began his career at Fulham, but didn’t make a first team appearance for the Cottagers, with unspectacular loan spells at Stevenage, Swindon and Cheltenham, before a permanent move to the Banks’s Stadium.

There he impressed though, and following 18 goals for the Saddlers from his 55 league appearances, Luton made their move last season, the forward netting five times in 18 outings during the second half of the campaign.

This term, he is already up to double figures after scoring against his former side in the 1-1 draw against Fulham recently, taking just 20 matches to get there, as he has quickly become one of the most feared attackers in the second tier.

On his impact at Kenilworth Road, Jones said: “All I can say is that he is a joy to work with, he hasn’t even been with us a year yet, but the rise has been pretty meteoric.

“It’s not because we’re geniuses at what we do but we have an environment here and a set of principles that if you want to work hard and you have talent, you have good attitude and you listen, then good things can happen and Elijah is the epitome of that.

“He is why we do what we do, he is why we take a gamble on a League Two player, with the greatest of respect, and we have plenty of those success stories.

"That is why the club is really sustainable because we can’t gamble or overspend.

“We have a real good structure here and Elijah is a good success story from that, as is Jack Stacey, as is James Justin, Isaac Vassell, Jack Mariott, people who are now doing fantastically well and that is why he’s in a good place.”

With Jones having an excellent track record on bringing players on during his two spells as manager at Luton, when asked why he thinks that is the case, the boss added: “It’s a mixture of life principles because we keep our discipline and hard work at the forefront of that.

“I look back at my ancestors, my family and my community that had to work hard and had to have discipline.

"If they didn’t turn up on time, or do certain things in the mining industry then if would’ve cost lives, that’s the lifestyle thing.

“Then, a lot of stuff I would’ve developed over my playing career, of stuff that I liked, things that I knew that others had, that I didn’t and would’ve liked.

“Or, when I had a good coach that coached well, or I was with a coach that didn’t really care about us and was just lazy, all those principles come around your playing career.

“Then, as a coach, you watch other coaches, work with managers.

"I worked under Paul Hart (Town assistant manager), who was a big influence on me.

"They all develop you and then you come with a set of principles that are called your philosophy, but philosophy is sometimes misconstrued as your shape.

"People thought my philosophy was playing a diamond, but it’s not.

“Your philosophy is how you live, breathe, work, act, speak, think and then implement on a football field.

"So, all of those things have come into place and what we do here is take everything seriously.

“We don’t let players rest on their laurels. We make sure they enjoy their time and that when they come in they learn.

“People go to Harvard because it’s the best place to learn.

"People go to MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) because it’s the best place to learn.

"People go to Eton, Oxford and Cambridge because it’s the best place to learn.

“We would like to follow in that kind getting, developing and producing, so that’s why we do it.”