Luton players warned there will be nothing 'easy' about trip to struggling Reading

Town head to a Royals side hammered 7-0 by Fulham recently

By Mike Simmonds
Wednesday, 19th January 2022, 6:30 am
Town first team coach Paul Hart
Town first team coach Paul Hart

Luton’s players will be told in no uncertain terms by experienced first team coach Paul Hart not to expect anything but an incredibly difficult encounter when they head to struggling Reading tonight.

The Royals’ last game in front of their own fans saw them humbled 7-0 by title-chasing Fulham, an embarrassing defeat and their worst home loss in history.

Veljko Paunović’s side are in a desperate run of form too, knocked out of the FA Cup by non-league Kidderminster earlier this month and also beaten 2-1 by Middlesbrough on Saturday as well.

It means Reading are now without a win in six, and have also gone seven games since their last victory at the Madejski Stadium, that coming against Barnsley back in October 2021.

The Berkshire side have dropped to fourth bottom of the table, not helped by a six point deduction by the EFL for breaching its profitability and sustainability rules.

Luton however go into the contest on the back of a marvellous 3-2 win over leaders Bournemouth on Saturday, and are now four without defeat, but Hart still had a warning to the players, saying: “You have to be careful of those teams looking upset and all that and then they stuff you.

“We have to be on our toes no matter what.

“Reading are a great football club and over the past couple of years, have produced some great football.

“This is not an easy game by any means. Yes it’s a tough game and we’re doing well but we have to string those games together and make sure it is about us.

“That’s not being selfish, it’s about how we approach the game and what we do with it.

“It’s painful when you go through something like that (7-0 defeat).

“How the environment is I don’t know, but I know what it’s like here if we lose one-nil, I can’t imagine it being very nice!”

It remains to be seen whether Luton will be coming up against former England, Newcastle, West Ham and Liverpool forward Andy Carroll.

The 33-year-old has scored twice in eight outings for Reading after signing a short term deal which runs out this week, leaving his future uncertain.

Hart added: “He’s a Premier League player in all aspects and has been strong throughout the years.

“They have other players as well that are very good.

“It doesn’t mean to say if they’re on a bad run that they’re not a good players, so we’ve got to do it right from our end.”