Jones frustrated by Town's 'lethargy' during first half of 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough

Luton chief annoyed his side conceded immediately after taking the lead at Kenilworth Road

Saturday, 1st May 2021, 6:21 pm
Updated Saturday, 1st May 2021, 6:22 pm
Elijah Adebayo in action against Middlesbrough this afternoon

Hatters boss Nathan Jones felt his side’s lethargic display in the first half was the reason they could only manage a 1-1 draw against Middlesbrough this afternoon.

The hosts had taken the lead on 19 minutes from their sixth corner when Kal Naismith’s header from James Bree’s set-piece was flicked on to the bar by keeper Jordan Archer, Glen Rea arriving to head the rebound into the net.

However, even before the kick-off was taken, Jones was visibly annoyed by the reaction of some of his players to the opening goal, trying to get them to switch back on, and it was to prove a warning they failed to heed, Boro taking just 30 seconds to make it 1-1 when an unmarked Duncan Watmore beat Simon Sluga.

After the break, Town improved, and should have won it when awarded a penalty with 19 minutes left, only for James Collins to see his weak effort easily saved by Archer.

Discussing his side’s reaction to moving in front, Jones said: “I just felt there was a lethargy about certain people that they were strutting, they were walking back into things and they weren’t really at it, and then that’s when I want us to go on again then.

“To concede straight away, I felt it, I felt there was a lethargy about us first half and I just said to them at half time, even when Elijah (Adebayo) gets knocked over and wants a free kick, I want him knocking people over, that’s the learning curve.

“It was just a little few things that went on that told me we weren’t right, right at it.

"As that wouldn't have happened in the Reading game, wouldn’t have happened in the Watford game as we were really at it, but I don't think we really were first half.

“Second half we were better and we should have won the game.

"On the balance of everything we should have won the game, none more so than missing a penalty when you should be scoring penalties.

“To concede straight after we scored, that was the biggest disappointment because if you just see that out, that gave them a way back into it as a part from the counter-attack I didn't really see them scoring first half.”