Hatters legend Harford hails Luton's 'Premier League fans' as Town return to the top flight

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Town chief address crowds in St George's Square

​​Luton Town legend Mick Harford labelled the Hatters’ supporters as ‘Premier League fans’ after they turned out in their thousands to salute Town’s top flight-bound players on Monday.

Following Saturday’s stunning and still for many, yet to sink play-off final victory over Coventry City on penalties, that saw Luton at the top table of English football next term, the club held an open-top bus parade from Kenilworth Road to St George's Square to celebrate their achievement.

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Hatters followers took to the streets to cheer their heroes on, with Harford receiving one of the biggest ovations when taking to the stage to address those who had gathered.

Luton legend Mick Harford applauds the Town faithful on MondayLuton legend Mick Harford applauds the Town faithful on Monday
Luton legend Mick Harford applauds the Town faithful on Monday

The former Luton striker had been part of the team when they were last in the top flight, or Division One as it was known then, has done every role possible at Kenilworth Road since, including managing the team to the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy final win in 2009.

Speaking to the crowd, Harford said: “Saturday was the biggest game in our history, this is the biggest day and the biggest turnout I’ve seen for our great football club.

"These guys are Premier League players now, but we’ve always had Premier League fans.

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"We are without doubt the best supported team in the country, the ups and downs we've had and you’ve been there, you’ve been the constant, there for us all the time.

"Myself, the board, the players, they really, really appreciate it. This is a big party, you’ve played a massive part of where we are today, so thank you very much.”

Harford also took time to thank 2020 for saving the club after Town were relegated out of the Football League with a 30-point deduction by the FA back in 2009.

He continued: “We would never have had a club if it wasn’t for 2020 and the consortium and Gary Sweet and the board.

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“This club was gone, this club had nearly gone and when these guys took over, each manager who’s been in charge, up to Rob (Edwards), have been supported very well, have been backed.

"The support they give to the football club and the squad, it’s amazing, so we’ve got to be very, very grateful for Gary Sweet and the 2020 board.”

Chairman David Wilkinson also addressed the thousands in attendance, adding: “I was destroyed, it was emotional to say the least.

"I still can’t believe it really, I certainly haven’t got my head around it and I don’t know when we will, I guess perhaps with the fixture comes out we really will.

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“I've been coming to Kenilworth Road for 65 years, we were talking this morning that the board have got 300 years of supporting the club in their history, so we’re Luton people.

"That’s what we care about and this is another part of the journey and you are one of the most important parts of it.”