Pelly had a premonition about Accrington brace

Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu picked up the MOM award at Accrington
Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu picked up the MOM award at Accrington

Midfielder Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu admitted he had a premonition that he was going to notch a double during Saturday’s 3-0 win over Accrington.

The 25-year-old did just that as well, swivelling clinically to score his first goal on 68 minutes and then added a corking third late on, hammering beyond Jonny Maxted from the edge of the area.

Mpanzu said afterwards: “I told the boys I was going to score two goals, they didn’t listen, but when that second one went in, it was a relief.

“As 2-0 is a bit of a sticky scoreline, but 3-0 put the game to bed and we managed the game well, secure for us.”

After being nominated for the EFL Goal of 2018, Mpanzu served up a potential candidate for next year’s award and when asked about being in the running once more, he said: “Hopefully, I just score bangers, so if it’s good enough, I don’t mind.

“Three points is what we need to get ourselves in the Championship.”

Mpanzu came within inches of a first ever senior hat-trick as well, just unable to turn home Harry Cornick’s header at the far post.

Even without the goals, he produced another starring performance to follow up his fine displays in recent weeks.

He said: “In the middle of the park it was a bit sticky, the pitch was cutting up, so I had to do one and two touch, keep the ball moving, stick your foot in there.

“I felt comfortable, it was a good game for me and it’s good to perform.”

Mpanzu’s stellar display was enough to take the man of the match award in front of the Sky cameras as Hatters boss Mick Harford felt he was a justified recipient.

He said: “Rightly so, I thought Pelly was excellent.

“We asked him to do a certain role, playing at the bottom of the diamond and he was excellent in possession and out of possession.

“We moved him slightly further forward and brought Alex (Baptiste) on, he got in a great position and got a goal, two goals, that his performance deserved.”

Keeper Marek Stech was also left hugely impressed by what his team-mate dished up on the day, saying: “They were two great finishes from Pell.

“We controlled the game, we stuck to our gameplan, and especially second half, out there it was really tough.

“A hard pitch, we couldn’t really pass the ball properly, but we dealt with it well and what can you ask for?

“Three nil, clean sheet, absolutely buzzing.

“Especially second half, we controlled the game and Pell, his goal was outstanding, open the body and top corner, so all of us are playing different parts.”