Town’s leading scorer Danny Hylton has been told in no uncertain terms to cut out his occasional bouts of petulance by manager Nathan Jones.
The striker, who notched his 22nd goal of the season during yesterday’s 3-1 victory over Crewe Alexandra, was needlessly booked on 69 minutes for delaying a throw-in for the visitors.
He then committed a foul less than 60 seconds later, earning a talking to from referee Ben Toner, which caused Jones to thump the dug out in frustration, fearing his striker was about to be dismissed.
Speaking afterwards, Jones said: “We make a joke of it but he has to change that a little bit, we’ve told him now in the changing room.
“It’s the only downside from the game, because he shouldn’t really do that.
“It’s petulance. It puts him in a position and then puts me in a position that I don’t want to be in, so it can’t keep happening.
“He gets away with that here because Luton love him, we love him, but he can’t continue to be like. I have put up with a lot but that has to change as that’s just pure petulance, it really is.
“Thankfully they’ve got padding over there. I think they fitted those when I arrived because the first thing I did was smash a TV, second was a seat, so they’ve put as much padding as they possibly could around the ground."
Despite being on his last warning, Jones hadn't been tempted to bring Hylton off as he had against Yeovil last weekend, where he was replaced just before half time after cautioned for celebrating in front of the home supporters.
This time he was replaced by Johnny Mullins with five minutes to go, as the Town chief said: "No, you have to kind of trust him if things happen.
“Last week he’d just got booked and he’s a pantomime villain but he’s got to realise that he’s got to help himself and he’s got to help me out.
"As there’s no point me just saying, 'he’s this and I’m going to bring him off,' because if I was playing him, I’d wind him up.
“I’d want to do everything I could, to try and get him to react. He has to be above that, because if he wants to score goals and wants to play 90 minutes and wants to score even more goals, then he has to.
“But it’s not about Danny Hylton, it was a wonderful team performance and he was part of that.
“He gets goals, works for me, wins his headers, he’s a threat for me, he’s as good as it is.”
In Hylton’s defence, he has kept his disciplinary problems from last year under control, booked 11 times this season, four less than last term, where he also was sent off twice, while he hasn’t missed a game through suspension either.
The striker didn’t ever feel in danger of being sent off yesterday, although will do his best to make sure he remains on the pitch, adding: “No, not at all. It was a bit of a silly yellow and a foul after, I tried to jump over him, it wasn’t intentional or anything.
“It’s the gaffer’s decision and I’ll try not to make him sub me off, but it’s his decision, I’ll try not to do anything silly, and I’ll try to cut that out.
“Sometimes I don’t help myself, sometimes things get made a bigger deal than they actually are. I don’t actually have to do much and there’s a bit of nervous energy around, 'is he going to?'
"Although it probably doesn’t look like it sometimes, I’m in control, I know what I’m doing. But the gaffer’s our manager, he’s a great manager, he decides what to do and he makes his decision.”