Superstitious striker Danny Hylton will stay as a masked man for Luton Town as long as he keeps banging in the goals this season.
The forward had netted five in nine games before suffering the cheekbone injury against Grimsby Town on September 10, as he wore the mask for the first time when coming off the bench in the 2-0 defeat at Crawley the following week.
I’m a little bit superstitious and I don’t want to change anything, so I’ll just keep it on.Danny Hylton
Restored to the starting line-up for the next home encounter with Doncaster, Hylton has gone on to bag an impressive nine goals in 12 matches since, meaning the protective cladding could be here to stay.
He said: “It could probably come off now. It’s still a little bit sore, when I mess around with the kids at home, and get a little elbow or a toy chucked in my face.
“It’s probably all right, but I just keep it on because I’m a little bit superstitious and I don’t want to change anything, so I’ll just keep it on.”
The mask did its job in two ways at the weekend during the 1-1 draw with Carlisle, as Hylton was on target once more, equalising Jason Kennedy’s early opener.
It then prevented another nasty facial injury, as United defender Michael Raynes saw red for an off the ball elbow on Town’s leading marksman late in the second half.
Hylton continued: “Exactly, a big nasty centre half, so it looked after me.
“League Two is a physical league, teams go direct and you have to man up a bit.
“You’re going to get elbows, going to get kicks, so sometimes I’m like a little baby, go down nearly crying, but you have to be aware and look after yourself out there.”
Hylton, who recently admitted he wants to finally reach 20 goals in a season for the first time his career, has every chance of doing that, with Saturday’s effort against Carlisle the 14th of his increasingly prolific campaign.
He doesn’t have a magic overall number in mind though, saying: “I honestly haven’t got a target.
“Every game I play in I want to score. I believe that I’ll get one chance every game, whether I’m playing good, bad or whatever, I’ve just got to be alive to try and take that chance.
“And if I don’t take the chance, I just try and give my all for the team and where I end up, I end up at the end of the season.”
One thing that Hylton has been avoiding recently too are the yellow cards that were totting up against him.
He picked up eight yellows and one red in his opening 18 games, to miss two games through suspension, but another caution free afternoon took his run to four matches without entering the referee’s notebook.
He added: “If I get booked I get booked, if I don’t I don’t. I’ll keep playing the same and luckily I haven’t.”