Luton attacker suspended for Burnley clash but fellow Town forward should be available

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Striker to miss trip to Turf Moor

Striker Carlton Morris is expected to be fit for Luton’s trip to relegation rivals Burnley tomorrow night after he has recovered from the calf injury that he picked up in the FA Cup third round tie with Bolton Wanderers on Sunday.

The 28-year-old was in the starting line-up when the Hatters were held to a goalless draw by their League One visitors, before being substituted with 14 minutes to go, and was seen with an icepack strapped to his leg after the game. Boss Rob Edwards had hoped it was just a case of cramp for the forward, who has scored three goals so far this term, but none since the 2-1 win over Everton in September, and that has now proved to the case, as he said: “Carlton’s in contention, he was just cramping up a little bit against Bolton, so that’s been fine.”

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Meanwhile, fellow Town attacker Jacob Brown sat out the FA Cup tie, and will do so against at Turf Moor due to a one match ban for picking up five bookings this term, four for the Hatters and one for Stoke City on the opening day of the season ahead of his move to Kenilworth Road. With wingback Issa Kabore absent due to his Africa Cup of Nations tournament starting with Burkina Faso, Edwards continued: “Browny’s suspended for this one, so we’re without Browny. He was feeling his knee for the Bolton game, but he’ll be fit for the next one. Apart from that, with Marv (Marvelous Nakamba) and Locks (Tom Lockyer), we’ve got a decent complement to go up there.”

Carlton Morris should be available to face Burnley on Friday night - pic: Liam SmithCarlton Morris should be available to face Burnley on Friday night - pic: Liam Smith
Carlton Morris should be available to face Burnley on Friday night - pic: Liam Smith

Opponents Burnley have won a number of plaudits for the manner in which manager Vincent Kompany has tried to go about things this season, sticking to the style that saw them romp to the Championship title last term, racking up a mighty 101 points in the process. It hasn’t worked yet, Luton appearing to have adapted better to the higher level of football, accumulating 15 points from 19 games, as opposed to the Clarets’ 11 from 20.

Although three of those came in a 2-1 victory at the Hatters in October, they have only avoided defeat five times this term, but despite that stat, Edwards was still highly complimentary of the team they will come up against though, adding: “I don’t think there’s one way of playing football. I love what Vinny has done at that football club with his staff and his players, they’ve played really well in a lot of games and I just think it’s difficult to win football matches and get points in this league. It is really ruthless, but I really like what they do, it’s a really difficult game for us.

"They have improved, they have got better from last year and it was a team who got over 100 points in the Championship. We try and do things our way, we’re still evolving and changing as well. We’re a different team now to what we were at the beginning of the season and certainly last year, so I can only concentrate on us and what we try and do. Yes we want to be hard to beat, but we want to try and play our way, and we want and it’s difficult, but we want to try and dominate games in our way as well.

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"We want to be an aggressive team, I feel we’ve been able to show that at times this year, but we’re definitely improving and going the right way. I think the big message is football can be played in so many different ways, whatever works for you, but it’s important to stress that Burnley have been in a lot of games and they’ve got a really good way of playing, they really, really have. So we’re prepared for it and we’ll go and give our best tomorrow night.”