Luton boss not expecting to let experienced keeper leave on loan

Town stopper James Shea watches on at the weekendTown stopper James Shea watches on at the weekend
Town stopper James Shea watches on at the weekend
Town stopper fully recovered from serious knee injury

Luton boss Rob Edwards isn’t anticipating loaning out goalkeeper James Shea in a bid to aid the long-serving stopper’s efforts at regaining match practice following his serious knee injury.

The 31-year-old was back on the bench at the weekend for the first time since being stretchered off against Cardiff in April last year, with new signing Jack Walton from Barnsley missing out due to a slight knock.

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Although Shea hasn’t had any first team action in almost 12 months, Edwards wants the former Arsenal youngster to stay and give competition to both Walton and first choice Ethan Horvath, rather than find him some game time on loan.

When asked if a short-term exit would do him good, he said: “No, I don’t think I would if I’m being honest.

“I think having three really good goalkeepers around and competing is what we need.

"If it was something that he was really keen to do then we'd have to have a chat, but I don’t think it would be.

"I think he would want to compete and fight.

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"We’ve got three really good keepers to fight it out for the the teamsheet and I think that’s the way I want it.”

With Luton heading to Grimsby Town in the FA Cup fourth round replay this evening, then Shea is expected to be included in the squad once more, as Edwards added: “He will be involved.

“It’s brilliant for him, he’s worked so, so hard.

"His return to training and being involved has been sped up in a safe way because he’s reacted so well and done so well in the training.

"I’m delighted to have him in and amongst it.

"Jack should be back very quickly as well so we have real competition in that area which is really good for us.”