Luton players told to 'stick their chests out' after Dons draw

James Justin can't hide his disappointment after Luton were held by AFC Wimbledon
James Justin can't hide his disappointment after Luton were held by AFC Wimbledon

Town’s players were told to leave the dressing room with their heads held high and chests stuck out despite conceding a stoppage time equaliser at home to AFC Wimbledon on Tuesday night.

Luton were seconds away from going five points clear at the top of the table in midweek, only for Steve Seadon to score at the death and earn his side a 2-2 draw.

However, Harford told his players to walk tall as they departed Kenilworth Road, saying: “They were a bit down conceding that late goal which would have put us in a real strong position.

“I said to them, ‘you walk out of this dressing room, we are top of the league, top of the league for the right reasons, because you’re a good team, good players, you lift your heads up and you stick your chest out and we go again on Saturday,’ and that was the message for the players.

“It’s my job, the staff’s job, also the players who self manage themselves as I’ve always said, they’re a good group, they’ll be back up, they’ll encourage each other.

“They’ll put demands on each other on the training ground and they’ll do that again for Saturday, 100 per cent we’ll be ready to go again Saturday.”

Harford now wants the Hatters to leave the field at Burton Albion this afternoon as promotion winners, and knows should they pick up all three points, it’s a distinct possibility.

He added: “Lets hope so, we never presume anything, there’s a chance, but we have to win on Saturday.

“If the players perform as they have done throughout the season, in the last two games, then we’ve got a chance.

“All we can focus on is ourselves and I believe if we win on Saturday then it’s really tough for anyone to catch us.

“So that’s what we’re all about, we can’t affect matters elsewhere, we’ll just be totally focused on trying to get three points at Burton.”

Luton go into the game three points in front of Barnsley, five ahead of Portsmouth and seven from Sunderland.

They are also nine in front of Charlton, with the top five well clear of the rest, 13 points separating fifth and sixth place.

Defender Jack Stacey said: "To be fair, the top five are probably way ahead of the rest and deserve to be where they are.

"The top five have a lot of quality and to even be competing with those teams around us we should be very proud, but we want to finish the job off."

Stacey himself has been in superb form this season and knows he has to be on top of his game just to keep a spot in the Hatters' starting 11.

He added: "I’ve been happy, even to get a place in this team with the competition in the squad, you have to be performing well, have to be playing well.

"That’s something that’s spurred us on, the form of everyone has been good and I’m happy to be part of it."