All you need to know ahead of the Town's trip to ShrewsburyShrewsbury Town v Luton Town
Sky Bet Leage 2
Saturday 30th August 2014, kick-off 3pm
Live coverage on Hatters Player, DiverseFM, BBC3CR and lutontown.co.uk
WHO? Shrewsbury Town, aka, the Shrews. The Shropshire side are back in League 2 following their relegation from League 1 last term. Now managed by Micky Mellon – the former Fleetwood Town manager who guided the Cod Army to the Conference title in 2012 – Shrewsbury are hopeful of an instant return to the third tier.
WHERE? Shrewsbury moved to the New Meadow – aka Greenhous Meadow for sponsorship purposes – in 2007, which is an all-seated 10,000 arena that replaced their former home, Gay Meadow. The old ground was one of the most picturesque in the country (depending on what time of the year you visited), situated in the town centre. The New Meadow is an out-of-town development with all the mod cons (i.e. covered seats and no pillars!).
CULTURE VULTURES. The town of Shrewsbury is known for its medieval heritage, having been founded around 800 AD (yes we are taking this from Wikipedia). It’s also the county town of Shropshire. You may hear the home faithful singing about “Salop”. In case you do, turn to your friends and impress them by telling them that Salop is an old abbreviation for Shropshire which comes from the Anglo-French ‘Salopesberia’. Shrewsbury’s town motto is “Floreat Salopia” (May Shrewsbury Flourish).
HOW TO GET THERE. Town supporters will continue to clock up the miles. From the Maple Road car park to the Greenhous Meadow changing rooms, it’s 127 miles up the M1, M6 and across the M54. Coming off the M54 the stadium is well-signposted. Alternatively you can book with the Bobbers Travel Club. They leave the Luton railway station at 10.30am and the fares are £23 for adults and £20 for concessions.
ALL-TICKET. Hatters fans have been allocated the secretly-named Provision CCTV Stand, which is behind one of the goals. Over 900 Town supporters have already snapped up tickets. The game is now all-ticket for Hatters followers with no admission on the day. Click here for further details, including prices.
HAVEN’T WE BEEN HERE BEFORE? Yes. The Town’s last meeting with the Shrews took place in the -30 season of 2008/09, and in that campaign the Hatters left the New Meadow pointless and goalless following a 3-0 defeat. The Shrews led in the fourth minute after Paul Murray’s goal before Ben Davies’ rocket made it 2-0 in the second half. Grant Holt completed the scoring with a cheeky back-heel. Jake Howells played 90 minutes for the Town.
TAMING OF THE SHREWS. The Town hold a strong record against the Shrews down the years, winning 11 to Shrewsbury’s five in the 20 meetings. The Hatters have won five of their 10 visits to Shrewsbury. In the games between the two clubs between December 1979 and April 2002 the Town were unbeaten in 10 meetings, winning seven of those. The Shrews ended that run with the 3-0 win in 2008, but the Town restored the winning thread in the last meeting at Kenilworth Road in February 2009, a 3-1 victory with Tom Craddock, Sam Parkin and Asa Hall on target.
FORMER SHREWS. Asa Hall, Billy Cooke and David Edwards are three former Shrews that have gone onto play for the Hatters, but the one most notable ex-Shrew that adorned Town colours was Andre Gray. The striker began his career at the New Meadow but was restricted to just five substitute appearances for Shrewsbury during 2009/10 before he was released. He was snapped by Hinckley in June 2011 and was then signed by the Town in March 2011.
CURRENT CONNECTION. Striker Andy Mangan, who signed for the Hatters on a short-term deal at the back end of last season, was snapped up by the Shrews this summer. The former Forest Green forward has begun the season well, scoring four times – including the Shrews’ winner against Leicester in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday night. Mangan tweaked a hamstring in scoring that goal which may rule him out of Saturday’s game with the Town.
ON THE DAY. 30th August. The Town’s record on this day is pretty good with only three defeats in 27 games. The Hatters have won 13 and drawn 11.
TOWN TEAM NEWS. The Hatters look set to welcome back left-back Scott Griffiths after the defender missed last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Accrington. Luke Guttridge is in contention for a starting place having made a vital contribution from the substitutes’ bench against Accrington. Alex Lawless and Jonathan Smith are getting closer to match fitness but will not be involved.
LIVE AND ONLINE.Hatters Player is the only place to listen to online commentary of the Hatters this season and once again the DiverseFM team will be bringing subscribers all the action from the New Meadow. What’s more there will be a full report, reaction and photographs post-match and live text updates during the match itself.
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