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