Rea missing for Wigan clash while Cranie remains a doubt

Town midfielder Glen Rea has been ruled out of Saturday’s home game against Wigan Athletic.

Thursday, 5th December 2019, 3:36 pm
Updated Thursday, 5th December 2019, 3:36 pm
Hatters midfielder Glen Rea

The 25-year-old is back with the club after his loan with National League side Woking ended at the weekend, and it was hoped he might be available for selection Luton's crunch clash with the Latics at Kenilworth Road, which would have been a first appearance in almost a year.

However, boss Graeme Jones said: “I spoke to Glen on Monday, he didn’t want to extend his loan, he’s played seven games for Woking, not full games, so he’s back amongst the group.

“He’s had a bit of an issue this week, so he won’t be involved at the weekend.”

There was slightly more promising news about defender Martin Cranie, who has missed Luton’s last three games, as Jones continued: He’s not far away.

"We’ll have a late decision to make on Martin, he’s back on the grass which is a big help.

"We need his experience around the group so that’s a bonus.”

Town go into the game on the back of a 7-0 hammering at Brentford last weekend and with both Izzy Brown (hamstring) and Brendan Galloway (patella) out until the new year.

When asked if he had seen a step up in training from fringe players such as George Moncur, Elliot Lee, Alan Sheehan and Luke Berry as they look to earn a recall to the first team, Jones said: "Absolutely, but for me they’ve been knocking on the door all season.

"I think it's gone up a degree this week, its what you want as obviously they feel like there's opportunities for places.

"How strong your fringe players are and how well they train, how they push the boys that have been playing, really defines your football club.

"They've all been really, really good professional from minute one.”

However, Jones also hinted that he might not make massive changes to his side, despite the Hatters being handed their heaviest league defeat since December 1966 at Griffin Park.

He added: “The two previous performances (Leeds and Charlton) were up there with our best two performances of the season, so we need to use that as a benchmark, we need to go back to doing that.

“What happens in football is it’s easy to go, one really poor defeat and one really poor performance, then the baby's out with the bathwater.

“Well let’s remember the other two games, as we’re going to need a reference to go back to.

“There was things wrong in those games as well, but the application, the intensity, the intention within that framework was really good.

“So I’ve had to try and reset and that’s the kind of performance we’ll be looking for at the weekend.”