Luton chief in no rush to loan out fit-again Town youngster Neufville after he made the bench for Cambridge victory

Josh Neufville in action for Yeovil during his loan spell with the Glovers last seasonJosh Neufville in action for Yeovil during his loan spell with the Glovers last season
Josh Neufville in action for Yeovil during his loan spell with the Glovers last season
Attacker one of three academy graduates named in match-day squad for FA Cup tie

Luton boss Nathan Jones is in no rush to make a decision on whether to send out young attacker Josh Neufville for another loan deal this season.

The 21-year-old impressed greatly during a spell with National League side Yeovil Town last term, playing 31 times for the Glovers and scoring five goals as well.

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However, he suffered a broken ankle during one of his final matches at Huish Park, which has led to a lengthy period of rehabilitation.

Now fit again, Neufville was a surprise inclusion on the bench for Town’s 3-0 FA Cup win at Cambridge United on Saturday, although he didn't get on to the pitch against the League One hosts.

Despite the transfer window being closed, Luton could still look to move him out to a non-league side during the second half of the campaign, as Jones said: "Yes, we can do, we’re in no rush to do that though as he hasn’t had a full game yet.

"We put him on the bench as one, he’s earned that, but two, we wanted to give him a lift as well after being out for so long.

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"He would have got that and we would have had no hesitation in putting him on.

"If we probably had scored the third earlier, we might be giving him a 10-minute run-out, but it wasn’t that type of game.

"As until we got the third goal, you never know what can happen, so again, if the loan is right for him, we’ll do it, but if not, we’re in no rush to do it.”

Neufville has been with the Hatters since an U10 and has made four first team outings, given his debut by Jones during his first spell as manager at Kenilworth Road, back in September 2018 when coming on against Brighton & Hove Albion U21s in the Checkatrade Trophy.

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He's a player the boss clearly rates too, as Jones continued: "He’s been training with the first team, so he’s been gathering a bit of momentum.

"It’s good to see him back because we believe he’s a good player, we believe he has certain attributes that we like here and it’s just about harnessing those.

"We loaned him to Yeovil and he did fantastically well, they looked after him, so it was a real opportunity for him to come back then after that loan and test himself in our environment.

"He never got to do that, so he’s just missed eight, nine, 10 months of that development, but now it’s all about him playing catch-up and taking his opportunities."

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The former Crawley Green youngster penned a new development contract in the summer and was joined by fellow academy graduates Ed McJannet and Aidan Francis-Clarke among the substitutes at the Abbey Stadium.

Jones felt the trio would have benefited from being involved in the first team environment, adding: "For sure they would have learned a lot.

"Even young Elliot Thorpe, it would have categorically been a different game compared to what he was used to in Tottenham’s 23s for example.

"It was a learning curve for them all, how we prepare, how we speak, the demands we put on the players.

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"I wasn’t too concerned about the performance the other day, I just wanted to make sure we got the win which is what we did.

"Even though it looked comfortable, it’s never comfortable in a football match because you still have to do the right things.

"What we did do was do the basics well throughout the duration of the game and I was really pleased with that.

"It showed we could make changes because we didn’t have a weak side out in any way shape or form.

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"We had two midfield players who haven’t been used to playing in the first team, so that was a bit of a gamble, but apart from that it was a still a strong side.

"We took the competition seriously and it showed the strength of the competition we have that we can do that.

"Bournemouth made less changes than us and Cambridge are two leagues up on Boreham Wood and it shows what a real difficult competition it can be.”

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