Naismith 'glad' to suffer heavy Fulham defeat if it means play-off rivals start doubting Luton

Defender backs side to bounce back following Cottagers hammering
Kal Naismith slides in against Fulham on Monday nightKal Naismith slides in against Fulham on Monday night
Kal Naismith slides in against Fulham on Monday night

Luton defender Kal Naismith revealed he was ‘glad’ the Hatters suffered a humiliating 7-0 defeat at the hands of champions Fulham on Monday night if it means they are taken for granted in the play-offs.

On what was a bitterly tough night at Craven Cottage for anyone of a Luton persuasion, the visitors found themselves 2-0 down at half time, Tom Cairney and Kenny Tete on target.

What then followed was a nightmare second 45 minutes, Fabio Carvalho, Aleksander Mitrovic (2), Bobby De Cordova-Reid and Jean Michael Seri all beating emergency loan signing Matt Ingram in the visiting goal as the Cottagers ran riot in front of the Sky TV cameras.

The result did little to change the equation for Town, who know a win on the final day against Reading at Kenilworth Road will see them finish in the top six, while a draw could be enough, just, if Middlesbrough fail to beat Preston.

Fronting up to the press afterwards, Naismith believes such an embarrassing defeat could actually work in their favour, as he said: “It was tough, a tough 90 minutes.

"It was their day, great team, league champions, fair play to them, that can happen here if you’re not quite at it and they’re bang it.

"They’ve done that to a lot of teams here, we’re just on the wrong end of it, but that’s football.

“We don’t need recognition from other people, we know what we’ve done day in day out, driving each other on, a positive environment, everybody’s learning, everybody’s getting better, everybody’s on the same page.

"We’ve been outstanding as a group, but it will be up to people to judge at the end of the season how well we’ve done regardless of what happens from here on in.

"We’re not happy to settle here, we’ll go again for a big game Saturday and then the play-offs.

"We want to go and as a team improve and I’m glad this result happened, because people will be doubting us now.

"People who are in the play-offs will be looking and saying ‘I hope we get Luton,’ well let’s see then, as we don’t have many bad games like that.

“We’ve played against teams like Bournemouth after a loss and bounced back, so I’m glad we’ve lost as we always bounce back.

"I know the character of the changing room, so I know it sets us up for a good result on Saturday.”

On the game itself, Naismith knew his side were very much second best against a rampant Cottagers side who broke the 100-goal mark for the season, scoring seven for the third time this term, but the first on home soil.

He added: “We couldn’t really get going.

"We started well, but then, you need to digest it, I’m sitting here emotional now, I think on the ball, just our passing, our options, but then again, Fulham are such a high pressing team.

"They’ve got their defenders on the half way line, they’re pressing you, they’re full of confidence, they’re 2-0 up early in the game, it happens.

"It’s their day, we were a bit off it and they were bang at it.

“The fans were at it, players were loving life, they knew they were ready to lift the title and when it went to two, three, four, it’s a tough day for everyone.”