McQuoid nets twice as Hatters knock out Swindon
Checkatrade Trophy, second round: Swindon Town 2 Luton Town 3
Luton Town continued to make a mockery of the EFL's decision to fine them in the Checkatrade Trophy, by knocking League One Swindon Town out this evening.
Boss Nathan Jones stuck to his guns again, after declaring he wouldn't be dictated to by the threat of another financial penalty coming his way, as he rung the changes from Saturday's FA Cup win over Solihull Moors, with only James Justin keeping his place in the starting 11, although it was still a side packed with League Two experience
However, with Swindon making just six alterations from their last league outing, showcasing their intent to progress, the Hatters were more than match for their opponents, and deservedly went through, aided by some truly haphazard Robins defending.
Town even had to do it the hard way, as they fell behind after just five minutes when Justin was caught out defensively, Luke Norris curling fabulously inside the far post.
However, Luton were back in the game within 60 seconds when the visitors' midfield quarter of Jonathan Smith, Jake Gray, Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu and Olly Lee, tigerish all evening, won the ball back and Isaac Vassell set off.
He worked an opening, firing at keeper Will Henry, who fumbled badly, as Josh McQuoid tapped in from a yard out, his first goal since April.
Swindon were almost ahead again as the entertaining encounter flowed from end-to-end, Nathan Delfouneso's low effort well stopped by Craig King.
Luton then created a host of presentable chances, with Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu's cross met by Vassell as Henry parried, the rebound hitting a Swindon defender and only going just behind.
Dan Potts then got in McQuoid's way as he tried to turn in Jack Senior's cross, but there was no stopping the striker on 18 minutes, collecting a wayward pass and using Vassell as a decoy, fairly hammered past Henry from the edge of the box.
Vassell was denied by a good low stop from the keeper, while he should have made it 3-1 on 31 minutes as found by a superb Gray through ball, advanced on Henry and tried to dink the stopper, only to see it fall wide.
Swindon made a triple change at the break, but still it was Hatters continued their attacking threat, breaking from deep, utilising the pace of Vassell.
However, when into the penalty area, it looked like it wouldn't be the striker's evening, as he headed Justin's perfect cross woefully off target eight yards out and completely unmarked.
Jonathan Smith flashed a dipping volley across goal, while Vassell lashed into the stands, as Luton were made to pay for their profligacy on the hour mark when Ellis Iandono took aim from 25 yards and thundered an effort beyond King.
However, as they had done earlier, Luton didn't for once look like the goal had knocked them from their stride, as they were back on the front foot.
They led 3-2 on 68 minutes too, Vassell taking full advantage of yet another defensive error to keep his cool and this time finally demonstrate a clinical touch, slotting under the advancing Henry.
Swindon although having plenty of possession, were restricted to efforts from range, as Johnny Goddard fired narrowly over, as the Hatters, with Craig Mackail-Smith on, always looked a constant danger on the break.
With Tyreeq Bakinson on for the impressive Gray, the visitors classily kept their opponents at arms length, as although the Robins almost snatched a draw, Iandolo nodding wide in stoppage time, Luton were good value for their win.
Over to you EFL.
Robins: Will Henry, Brandon Oromonde-Ottewill (Jermaine Hylton 46), Conor Thomas, Anton Rodgers (C Ellis Iandolo 46), Johnny Goddard, Rhys Sharpe, Jake Evans, Darnell Furlong, Sean Murray, Nathan Delfouneso, Luke Norris (Jordan Young 46).
Subs not used: Lawrence Vigouroux, Tom Ouldridge, Scott Twine.
Hatters: Craig King, James Justin, Jack Senior, Dan Potts, Frankie Musonda, Olly Lee, Jake Gray (Tyreeq Bakinson 85), Jonathan Smith, Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu, Isaac Vassell, Josh McQuoid (Craig Mackail-Smith 74).
Subs not used: Liam Gooch, Connor Tomlinson, Zane Banton, Jack Snelus, Kavan Cotter.
Attendance: 1,692 (134 Hatters).
Booked: McQuoid 73
Referee: Roger East.
Star man: Josh McQuoid.