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27 October 2018 Venue The Cherry Red Records Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW | AFC WIMBLEDON v LUTON TOWN

27 October 2018

The Hatters head to struggling AFC Wimbledon this afternoon looking to make it three successive wins to cement their place in the Sky Bet League One play-off positions.

Nathan Jones’ side moved up to sixth spot with Tuesday night’s impressive dismantling of high-flying Accrington Stanley in a feisty encounter at Kenilworth Road, with Danny Hylton moving to the top of the scoring charts with a hat-trick taking him to five goals so far this season.

It was Hylton’s second start following nine weeks on the sidelines through injury, and the Town talisman will be hopeful of adding to his haul of 55 goals in 97 Luton appearances against a club where he spent a loan spell from Rotherham during the 2013-14 campaign.

While Town have lost just once in their last eight league games, winning five of them, Wimbledon are bang out of form having suffered a fifth straight defeat, and seventh in eight matches, when they went down 2-0 at fellow strugglers Bristol Rovers on Tuesday night.

Neal Ardley’s men have failed to score in four of those last five, and currently sit in 22nd place with 11 points, one point behind Gillingham who are just above the relegation line.

Apart from midfielder Luke Berry and left-back Dan Potts, out with knee and groin injuries respectively, Jones has a full squad to choose from with goalkeeper Marek Stech and centre-half Lloyd Jones back available for selection following hernia operations.

 

THE GAFFER SAYS:

ON HIS SQUAD’S FITNESS: “Apart from Potts and Berry we’re at full strength. Marek is back, and it’ll be good to have Elliot Lee back, so we’ve got that strength on the bench and we’re pretty much as strong as we can be. Potts and Berry, we’ve just got to be a little bit careful with them and give them a little bit of time.”

ON GOING TO A GROUND WHERE HE LOST SHORTLY AFTER TAKING OVER: “It’s a tough game to go there, a very very tough game, as I’ve known in the past. We’re more concerned about everything we do. We’re in a different kind of form to them, but as I said the margins are so small, if they get a goal early on, it could gee them up. So what we’ll do is we’ll prepare in exactly the same way for exactly the same type of team because regardless of form, it’s going to be a very, very tough game. It’s a tough place to go. I know that from probably the biggest learning curve I had in management, losing 4-1 there when we actually felt we played reasonably well in the middle thirds, it was just both boxes we weren’t. That was a learning curve for me, so we won’t make that mistake again.”

YOU CAN NOW WATCH NATHAN JONES' PRE-MATCH PRESS CONFERENCE ON IFOLLOW HATTERS FREEVIEW BY CLICKING HERE

WHO?

The youngest side in the EFL, AFC Wimbledon’s history is well known. Their climb from the nether-reaches of Non-League up to the EFL was impressive – promotion up from the Combined Counties League in 2002, to League One status by 2016. The club have now got permission to move to a new stadium next to their original home on Plough Lane, which they hope to be in by the start of next season. That will have a capacity of 11,000.

WHEN AND WHERE?

Kick-off is at 3pm at the Cherry Red Records Stadium or, as it has also been known traditionally, Kingsmeadow. The ground was built in 1989, and was the home of Kingstonian. The Dons moved there after their inception, with Kingstonian moving out in 2017. Chelsea Women also use this venue, which has a capacity of 4,850, with half of that seating.

TICKET INFORMATION

There are no tickets available for visiting supporters as the Hatters have sold out their allocation of 749, with 675 terrace tickets on the RyGas Terrace and 74 seats in the John Green Stand.

MAN IN THE MIDDLE?

Today's game will be refereed by Andy Davies, who last refereed us against West Brom U21 in the Checkatrade Trophy in October 2016. Davies has shown 44 yellow cards and one red in 12 games so far this season, mainly in the Championship.

PLAYED BEFORE?

The Hatters last played the Dons in October 2017 in the Checkatrade Trophy, when Andrew Shinnie bagged a brace in a 2-1 win for the Town. Of our ten meetings, the Hatters have won three, drawn three and lost four.

FOLLOW THE ACTION

The main blow-by-blow account of the action from Kingsmeadowwill be provided via the Match Centre on the club website, which you can access by clicking here. (*Please note that the club's Live Text will appear only by accessing through an internet browser, users of the Luton Town FC app will receive updates from Opta...the EFL Digital team assure us they are working on a fix to get club updates onto the app)

The main moments from the game will appear on the Hatters' social media feeds:
Twitter – @LutonTown
Facebook – www.facebook.com/LutonTown/
Instagram – www.instagram.com/ltfc_official/

And of course Simon Pitts will be on hand to provide commentary for iFollow Hatters which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

 

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Match Reports

REPORT & GALLERY | AFC WIMBLEDON 0 LUTON TOWN 2

Pelly and Elliot on target as the Hatters move up to fifth with a third win in a

27 October 2018

The Hatters moved up to fifth in the Sky Bet League One table as goals from Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu and Elliot Lee secured a third successive win at struggling AFC Wimbledon this afternoon.

The Town produced a real workmanlike performance to inflict a sixth straight defeat on the Dons, and keep a second clean sheet in those three winning matches to cement their place in the play-off positions having made the breakthrough with the 4-1 midweek dismantling of Accrington Stanley.

Mpanzu volleyed in the opener just after the hour with his first goal of the campaign, while Lee – the only change to Nathan Jones’ starting line-up at the Cherry Red Records Stadium as he returned after three games out to replace the injured Jorge Grant – bagged his fifth with ten minutes to go, after Danny Hylton had seen a penalty saved in between.

James Shea was in goal on his return to his former club, with Jack Stacey, Matty Pearson, Sonny Bradley and James Justin in the back four. Glen Rea anchored the midfield with Mpanzu, Andrew Shinnie and Lee ahead of him, behind the front two of Hylton and James Collins.

The Town came within a lick of paint of opening the scoring in the fourth minute, when Lee crossed from the right and Hylton’s header hit the inside of the post and came back out, and Shinnie and Rea couldn’t force the rebound home.

The top scorer went close again in the 12th minute when Lee and Mpanzu produced a great bit of combination play to the left of the Wimbledon penalty area, the former crossed for Hylton to get another header on goal, and although it beat Joe McDonnell, centre-half Rod McDonald was on hand to hook clear off the line.

Wimbledon responded with James Hanson sending a tame header straight at Shea, before a 15th-minute corner caused consternation in the Town six-yard box, but the assistant’s flag was already up for offside before Tom Soares hooked his shot over the bar.

Anthony Hartigan fizzed a right-footed shot just past Shea’s post on the half-hour as Wimbledon enjoyed a decent spell, but the Town were soon back on the front foot, Mpanzu ignoring Stacey’s overlapping run down the right to pick out Collins at the far post, but the striker’s header was comfortable for McDonnell to hold.

A scrappy period followed, but it was the hosts who finished the half with the next shot on goal, Scott Wagstaff picking up a ball just inside the Town half and driving forward to unleash a right-footed shot that Shea was right behind.

Shinnie had the first attempt of the second half, although his 25-yard drive was too high to trouble McDonnell – and it was the same at the other end, as Hartigan curled a free-kick over Shea’s bar from similar distance after Bradley had fouled Hanson.

Justin was on set-piece duty for the Hatters in Grant’s absence, and it was from the 20-year-old’s right-wing free-kick that the next opening came for the Town, Bradley meeting this one with a looping header that landed on the roof of the net.

The breakthrough came in the 61st minute when Stacey, Hylton and Shinnie linked up brilliantly on the right for the Scot to stand a lovely cross up to the far post, where Mpanzu was waiting to volley past McDonnell for his first of the season.

Three minutes later Shinnie was at his creative best again, feeding Lee to his left, but the ex-Barnsley man’s attempted curler was well saved by McDonnell, who – two minutes later – had his easiest save of the afternoon to make as Hylton’s attempted Panenka penalty, after the striker had been fouled himself by Trotter, never looked like making its way past the home keeper in the middle of his goal.

Wimbledon threatened briefly in the 73rd minute when Trotter’s back header from a long throw was saved comfortably by Shea, but the action was soon back up at the other end as the Town set up camp in the Dons’ half.

Rea headed onto the roof of the net on 75 minutes, another Justin free-kick from the right causing the hosts a problem. A minute later a great turn by Shinnie enabled the midfielder to feed Hylton into the box to his right, but the striker could only find the side-netting as McDonnell narrowed the angle.

The Dons’ keeper denied Collins with his feet in the 78th minute, after Lee set up his fellow four-goal forward.

The favour was returned with interest two minutes later, however, as the tireless Collins won a thunderous challenge midway inside the Wimbledon half and emerged with the ball to feed Lee, who moved one goal ahead of his pal with one of those curling right-footed shots into the bottom corner that we have become accustomed to from around 22 yards out.

That was enough to seal a fifth win in the last six league matches – six in seven in all competitions – with the Town scoring two or more in each of our last eight fixtures. Next up, Rochdale!

 

TOWN: Shea, Stacey, Pearson, Bradley, Justin, Rea ©, Mpanzu, Shinnie, Lee (Sheehan 84), Hylton, Collins. Subs: McCormack, Cornick, LuaLua, Jarvis, Jones, Isted.

Goals: Mpanzu 61, Lee 80

DONS: McDonnell, Purrington (Pinnock 65), Oshilaja ©, Nightingale, Wagstaff, Hartigan, Appiah (Pigott 65), Trotter, Hanson, Soares, McDonald. Subs: King (GK), Watson, Thomas, Egan, Burey.

REFEREE: Andrew Davies

ATT: 4,202 (751 Hatters)

 

 

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