Rea: No blame on top scorer Collins for Boro penalty miss

Town striker James Collins missed from the spot on SaturdayTown striker James Collins missed from the spot on Saturday
Town striker James Collins missed from the spot on Saturday
Striker fails to repeat his heroics against Watford

Town midfielder Glen Rea didn’t think there should be any blame apportioned to top scorer James Collins for failing to score from the spot against Middlesbrough on Saturday.

With the scores level at 1-1 and 19 minutes remaining, midfielder Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall went over in the area under a challenge from Paddy McNair, referee Jeremy Simpson, who had not given one against Elijah Adebayo moments earlier, pointing to the spot.

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Collins stepped up but was unable to repeat his heroics against Watford, Boro keeper Jordan Archer diving to his left to palm aside for a corner.

It now means that Luton striker has a record of 16 successful efforts for the Hatters from 22 attempts, while he has now netted eight in the Championship, with three misses, including one against Boro earlier in the season, his spot-kick ruled out for a double hit.

Rea said: "It’s unfortunate because he steps up and takes it all the time.

"Credit to him for doing that, so there’s no blame going to him.

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"He’s missed, he steps up to do it all the time and he scores more than he misses.

"He’s a great player and I’m not going to start slating him as it could happen to anyone that’s stood up to take a penalty.

"It takes courage to do that anyway, so no blame attached to him.”

Although it was just a point that the Hatters took from the contest, Rea was still content after it moved Town up to 61 for the campaign, 10 more than they finished with last term.

He added: “We’d have taken that last year wouldn’t we.

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“I thought we did well (against Boro), we could have maybe nicked it.

"They’re a great club, they maybe could have nicked it, but overall it was quite a good game for both sides.

"We want to strive for more and more, and if we keep improving every year then who knows what’s going to happen?

"As we improved again from last year, so if we just keep doing that, keep plugging along, keep getting points, who knows where we can end up?

"I’ve said it before and I’ll keep reiterating it, I think this is a club on the up and it’s a great place to be.