Thorpe: Kenilworth Road form is vital for the Hatters

Striker Tony Thorpe in his Luton Town days
Striker Tony Thorpe in his Luton Town days

Former Luton striker Tony Thorpe has urged the Hatters have to make the most of their Kenilworth Road surroundings in the Championship this season.

Town have played five games so far in front of their own fans, picking up just five points out of a possible 15.

Standing in their way of a second home success of the campaign this weekend is another of Thorpe’s old clubs, Bristol City, whom he enjoyed four years with.

Speaking to the Luton News, he said: “I think they’ve got to turn this home form around, as if you look at their fixtures, they’ve got Bristol, Fulham away, Birmingham away and then (Nottingham) Forest, there’s just no easy games.

“They’ve got to turn the home form into a bit of a fortress at the Kenny and if they can do that, they can get the magic 50 points which is needed most seasons.

“They’re sitting on 11 at the minute, so if they can just win a few more games at home, I think they’ll be fine.”

Thorpe, who scored 84 goals in 192 appearances over two spells with the Hatters, went to Ashton Gate via a brief spell at Fulham.

He knows just how tough a test the Robins will be for Luton though, despite Town having won their last three clashes against City on home soil, saying: “They’ve got strength in depth Bristol, I’ve watched them a few times and I tell you what, they’re a hard team to play against.

“They’ve got two very experienced centre halves, and he’s (manager Lee Johnson) building a team, he’s been doing it for a long time now.

“It won’t be easy for Bristol on Saturday, but they’ll fancy themselves against Luton who have won one in the last six.

“But I don’t think Bristol have got a good record at Kenilworth Road, it’s never an easy place going to Luton for them.

“Even when I used to play there and when we played against Bristol, they didn’t have their own way against us.

“It will be tough, if I was going to stick my neck on the line I’d say it will be a draw.”

Town’s away form has seen them pick up two wins so far, at Barnsley and Blackburn, and Thorpe expects them to surprise some more established Championship outfits on their travels.

He added: “I think away from home, Luton will definitely surprise a few teams.

“The pressure will be off them a little bit and they can go and play on those nice big pitches, whereas at home, the onus is on you to win football matches and the pressure will flip I would have thought.

“You can’t keep winning away from home.

"I know they got a great result at Blackburn, but I don’t think Blackburn are going to be in the top six this year.

"They’ve got to be beating teams at home, or at least, picking up some good wins and maybe a draw, which will see where they’re going to end up.

"For me, I think they’ve just got enough from what I’ve seen so far, but it is a long drawn out hard season, that Championship.”