Jones felt a 'revitalised' Bradley proved Reading axe was the right call

Hatters boss Graeme Jones thought that recalled defender Sonny Bradley’s performance against Leeds United on Saturday proved it was the right decision to drop him for the recent 3-0 defeat at Reading.

Monday, 25th November 2019, 6:45 am
Updated Tuesday, 26th November 2019, 4:10 pm
The recalled Sonny Bradley on the ball for Luton against Leeds

The Town captain missed out at the Madejski Stadium before the international break, where Luton produced their worst display of the season, with Jones stating afterwards he felt a need to take the former Plymouth centre half ‘out of the firing line.’

Bradley, who has also become a father recently, was brought back into the team at the weekend, giving a fine performance in keeping the Whites attackers at arm's length for long periods, until Patrick Bamford’s last-gasp strike gave the visitors a 2-1 win.

Jones said: “I respect Sonny Bradley, massively, I love the boy, but sometimes you have to make managerial decisions in the best interests of your players.

“I did that, we suffered at Reading, because of it, but we got a level from Sonny today that I was absolutely delighted with.

“Sonny Bradley cares about this club, he wants to do well.

"He’s conscientious and if we’re measuring today, it was the right decision against Reading as I’ve seen a revitalised, refreshed Sonny Bradley."

Goalkeeper James Shea was thrilled to see Bradley back in front of him once more, saying: "I wouldn’t expect anything else to be honest, Sonny Bradley’s, Sonny Bradley.

"He's a class defender, he's a great person to have in your team, you want him in your team.

"So it was great to have him back out there today."

Bradley's inclusion was one of five changes made by Jones, with Izzy Brown, James Bree, Andrew Shinnie and Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu all coming back into the team as well.

On their displays, Jones added: "I was delighted, there’s not a performance I would dig out and say I was disappointed with.

"Tactically we were excellent, the understanding was excellent, the gameplan worked until I think the 90th minute we conceded.

"It worked for 90 minutes, but 90 minutes was not enough.

"We can all be critical here, but I have to try and assess the work and assess the opponent.

"The opponent’s outstanding, some clips I didn’t show the boys as I think it would have frightened the living daylights out of them, they can really cut you open if you go after them.

"Marcelo’s (Bielsa, Leeds boss) a guy I’ve got huge respect for, and his work, worldwide.

"I’ve seen his Marseille teams, seen his Bilbao teams, I’ve played against his Leeds team, I know what they can do.

"For us to be in the game for 90 minutes was satisfying, but to not get something when you really, really deserve something, that's what’s been difficult to take."