Luton boss: Adebayo's threat in the final third makes it hard to take him off

Town chief impressed by striker's progress since arriving at Kenilworth Road

Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 5:29 pm
Updated Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 5:32 pm
Elijah Adebayo is fouled by Watford keeper Daniel Bachmann for Luton's match-winning penalty on Saturday

Luton boss Nathan Jones admits striker Elijah Adebayo s threat in the final third makes it very difficult to take him off during a game.

The Town attacker, who joined from League Two Walsall in the January transfer window, was named in the starting line-up once more against fierce rivals Watford on Saturday, leading the line against a defence which included Nigerian international William Troost-Ekong.

He was to prove a real handful to the Hornets all afternoon, involved in the defining moment as well, racing on to an underhit backpass before being cleaned out by keeper Daniel Bachmann just inside the area for a penalty.

Adebayo had taken Luton's last spot-kick against Coventry, but was injured in the challenge, meaning James Collins came off the bench to do the rest, as Jones said: "He’s such a threat Elijah.

"It’s very difficult to take Elijah off as even when he’s not playing very well at times, and he played well, I’m not saying that, but even if he’s not playing very well, you always know you can put a ball in there and he’s a threat.

"He brings people into play, he works tirelessly, his hold up play is getting better and he showed great commitment to get the penalty.

"If he was injured then it just so happens we’ve got another specialist who happens to be first choice and we bring him on no problem."

Adebayo might have opened the scoring himself moments before winning the penalty, as picked out by a pinpoint cross from the right he attempted a spectacular volley, and ended up rather comically handballing it to give away a free kick.

Jones continued: "He should have headed it and that’s what we brought him here for.

"If we want someone who can do a bicycle kick, we play Collo or Kazenga or someone else, but we’ve brought him here to head it and we had a number of opportunities second half to put balls in, create chances.

"But he’s done magnificently for the penalty so he’s redeemed himself.

"We would have liked to have been a little bit more comfortable in terms of the chances we took, but in terms of the level of performance, that’s fantastic.

"I’ve watched a number of Watford games, inadvertently for opposition and for Watford, I don’t think they’ve been dominated like that for a while.