Town chief felt the Hatters gained 'a lot of respect' for their Premier League efforts

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Luton boss looking to take top flight experience into the Championship

Luton boss Rob Edwards believes his side earned the respect of the rest of the Premier League despite their relegation last term.

Although the Hatters were unable to beat the bookmakers’ predictions and pull off the unbelievable feat of staying up following a run of one win in their last 17 games, the manner in which they attacked their survival bid pleased the Town manager. He believes it saw the club earn some real admiration from those outside of Kenilworth Road as well, saying: "This league is tough, it’s really hard and I understand why we were the favourites to go back down and ultimately people were right.

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"But I think and I know we gained a lot of respect from a lot of people. I would have wanted more points of course and we’ve made a few friends along the way. I think people have appreciated what we’ve tried to do, how we’ve gone about things. We’ve tried to win every game, we tried to attack every game and from the Arsenal game here (4-3 defeat), that has been us. That's how I want my team to play and we’ve scored goals, been good to watch, been involved in loads of good games, but there was still fragility there and in the end we’ve maxed out.

Town winger Andros Townsend holds the ball up against Fulham - pic: Liam SmithTown winger Andros Townsend holds the ball up against Fulham - pic: Liam Smith
Town winger Andros Townsend holds the ball up against Fulham - pic: Liam Smith

"We’ve pushed people, we’ve broken people, but it just tailed off towards the end. When you’ve got eight, nine, 10, 12, 13 players missing, it just became too much. So people were right in the end and that hurts me, that frustrates me. But hopefully we’ve earned a bit of respect and the people that wrote those things where maybe there was a lack of respect at the beginning think ‘you know what, fair play to them.’”

Now approaching another season in the Championship, Edwards believes both he and the players can take a lot from their exposure to the highest tier of English football in the second tier campaign, adding: “It can only get better going up against the best as some of the managers and some of the conversations I've had this year have been incredible.

"I've learned a lot from them going up against their teams and I like the way we’ve gone about things. It’s great as the first day of pre-season, the lads are going to know exactly how we’re going to be, what we’re going to be about, how we’re going to try and attack the league. There’s no doubt we’re all better, better equipped for the season ahead.”

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