Skipper Sheehan reflects on a ‘strange’ promotion-winning season with Luton

Alan Sheehan and Sonny Bradley lift the League One trophy
Alan Sheehan and Sonny Bradley lift the League One trophy

Town club captain Alan Sheehan admitted it has been a ‘strange’ season watching the Hatters win promotion to the Championship.

The 32-year-old was one of the stars of the show last year as Luton finished second in League Two, starting all but four of their matches.

He was also named in the EFL and PFA Sky Bet League Two Teams of the Season, the EA Sports EFL Team of the Season, as well as collecting the Supporters’ Player of the Year and Internet Player of the Year at Kenilworth Road.

However this term, he began the first three matches, before being unable to dislodge either Sonny Bradley or Matty Pearson.

In the end, he made just 17 league appearance in total, but just one more start, as he said: “It’s been strange, it’s been weird as most of the clubs I’ve been at, I’ve played.

“I got a niggle at the wrong time, and two lads Matty and Sonny came in and they’ve been excellent.

“The two were up for players of the season, it just shows the level of consistency that they brought and how good they’ve been, because no injuries, no suspensions, no nothing.

“Usually you’re waiting for your chance, it’s been strange, I would never had imagined it to be like that this year.

“I suppose on the plus side, if the players that were keeping me out were cr*p, I’d be more annoyed, but when the boys are doing really well and the team is doing really well, sometimes you’ve just got to get on with it and got to help them.

“So I flipped it around this year, possibly in younger years, I don’t know what way I would have reacted to it, probably not great.

“But when they’re two good lads, very good players, I just tried my best to be there and help the team.”

Sheehan did finally get back into the side for the 3-0 win at Accrington Stanley last month, but that was to end in disappointment, having to go off injured early in the second half.

He continued: “That was heartbreaking, as you work very hard to stay fit, stay around it and then you finally get your reward.

“I was back playing, things are going well, and I felt my Achilles go, so that’s me done for a while unfortunately.

“It was a bit gutting really, but if they offered me an injury for champions or getting promotion, I would have taken it.”

During the campaign, Sheehan has been a big part behind the scenes and on match days too, offering his guidance from the dug out, firstly alongside Nathan Jones and then Mick Harford.

On his role, he added: “First and foremost, I’m a player, but if anyone needs to ask anything, all the young boys, I’ve been in the game a lot longer, so I suppose I can pass on bits of advice here and there.

“When you’re not playing, you just try and do everything you can.

“Me and Mick speak all the time, he’s done an incredible job here and what an exciting way to end his managerial way as champions in front of his home crowd.”

After not lifting the title last term, with the Hatters ending as runners-up, Sheehan was thrilled to be able to hoist the main prize at the weekend.

He added: “We finished second to mighty Accrington, they came first, fair play to them, but I suppose I’d rather come second and get promoted this year than probably winning it and doing nothing this year.

“We’ve kicked on, we did some excellent business and brought some excellent players in, brilliant characters and it’s just such an exciting place at the moment.

“Being at Luton Town, it’s incredible.

“We’re not thinking about next year or anything right now though, as you can’t really look too far ahead in this game, it’s a crazy game.”