Summer signing Onyedinma is an option for Luton at wingback against Potters

Jones could use attacker with Potts lacking match sharpness

By Mike Simmonds
Friday, 5th November 2021, 11:00 am
Fred Onyedinma on the ball against Middlesbrough
Fred Onyedinma on the ball against Middlesbrough

Summer signing Fred Onyedinma could potentially be deployed as a wingback for the Hatters if Amari’i Bell doesn’t recover from his dead leg in time for the visit of Stoke City on Saturday.

The 24-year-old is no stranger to the position, having arrived from Wycombe in May following a season in which he finished up at Adams Park utilised in the role by Chairboys boss Gareth Ainsworth.

With Bell absent on Tuesday night, Dan Potts started the clash with Middlesbrough, replaced after 55 minutes as Luton trailed 1-0, while Onyedinma's introduction saw Town score three goals in no time at all to lead 3-1.

When asked whether he could use the ex-Millwall player there against the Potters, Hatters manager Nathan Jones said: “He played there for probably 15 games for Wycombe at the end of last year and did well.

“Wycombe were in good form and if their form for the last 15 games had been exactly the same in the first 15 they’d still be a Championship side.

“He contributed to a really good, positive Wycombe side, so we know he can do that.

“It’s part and parcel of his development, it’s an option, but we’ll have to see how Amari’i and Pottsy are.

“Pottsy will be better for the 55 minutes he played, but we’ve got decent options.

"We played Jordan Clark there, Gabe Osho, Kal Naismith, so we’ve got decent options.”

Going into the game, Potts, who suffered a hamstring injury in the final pre-season game against Brighton had only played 45 minutes of Championship football, that coming against Blackburn Rovers on September 11 when he was taken off at half time.

Jones felt it was a tough ask on the long serving defender to be thrown in against a Boro attack containing the tricky Isaiah Jones, who tormented him at times, with little in the way of match practice, adding: “He has been a bit unfortunate because the last time he played at Blackburn, he hadn’t had games, Amari’i pulled out last minute and the exact same happened this week.

"Without giving Dan minutes, we have had to put him straight in to difficult fixtures, so it is credit to him that he had the courage to do that.

"He just lacks sharpness, rhythm and match fitness, once he gets that he will be fine.

"It just so happens that Amari’i has picked up certain things at the time when Dan isn’t quite ready.”