All you need to know and more ahead of Saturday's clashLuton Town v Oxford United
Sky Bet League 2
Saturday 27th September 2014, kick-off 3pm
Live commentary on Hatters Player, DiverseFM, BBC3CR and lutontown.co.uk
• Hatters – unbeaten in three games – aim for second home win of the season
• Oxford unbeaten in five games; won one, drawn four
• Head2Head: Town wins: 15, Oxford wins: 12, Draws: 7
WHO? For the second week running the Town take on the U’s – this time the U’s of Oxford United aaka (also, also known as) the Yellows. The club were formed in 1893 as Headington United and last season they finished in eighth place in League 2. Former Town midfielder Gary Waddock was axed over the summer and he was replaced by head coach Michael Appleton.
HISTORY BOOKS. Oxford have a varied history and similar to the Hatters in that they’ve enjoyed success in the top flight, have won a major trophy (the League Cup in 1986) and experienced several seasons in the Conference. United finally returned to the Football League after four seasons in non-league, beating York at Wembley in the 2010 Conference Play-Off final.
HAVEN’T WE MET BEFORE? Yep, a total of 34 times – not bad considering the first meeting between the two sides came as recently as 1970. The Town have the better head-to-head record, winning 15 to Oxford’s 12. United’s last win on Bedfordshire soil came back in a 1998 League Cup tie (which the Town would win on aggregate in the second leg), whilst their previous win at Kenilworth Road was back in May 1987 in the top flight. Since that game the Town are unbeaten in their last seven home League meetings with the U’s (W5, D2). The Hatters beat United 2-1 with two injury-time goals in their last meeting, back in the Conference in February 2010 at Kenilworth Road.
DON’T MENTION. Injury-time corners. Swindon Town. Thames Valley Royals. Robert Maxwell.
DO MENTION. The Manor Ground. The Milk Cup. Ron Atkinson. John Aldridge.
OLD BOYS NETWORK. A good place to start would be Steve Foster, the Town’s inspiration captain during the heady top-flight days in the late 1980s. The man who would lift the Littlewoods Cup in 1988. He joined the Town from Brighton and left, after making 212 appearance, for Oxford. In recent years, Tom Craddock, Asa Hall, Steve Basham, Chris Allen, Darren Patterson and David Oldfield have represented both clubs.
THIS TIME ROUND. Oxford will arrive at Kenilworth Road unbeaten in their last five League 2 matches, winning one (v Accrington) and drawing four. New boss Appleton saw his side lose their first four matches of the season but all of those defeats were by the odd goal.
ONE TO WATCH? Striker Danny Hylton. The U’s top goal-getter, who has six goals to his name already this season.
REF WATCH. Saturday’s man-in-the-middle is Mark Haywood, who has, so far this season, shown 24 yellow cards and two reds in his 10 matches so far this term. It will be the first time the whistler has officiated a match involving the Hatters.
ON THE DAY. 27th September. The Town’s last win on this date was in 2005 in the Championship when goals from Warren Feeney, Steve Howard and Ahmet Brkovic saw off Preston North End 3-0 at Kenilworth Road. The Hatters also beat Manchester City in the top flight in 1986.
TICKETS PLEASE! Tickets can still be purchased from the Luton Town ticket office at the usual matchday prices of: £20 adults, £15 seniors and young adults, £12 golden seniors, £8 youths, £5 juniors. And don't forget possibly the best way to buy tickets: online. Buy them and pick them up on the day. Simple.
TOWN TEAM NEWS. Midfielder Jonathan Smith is expected to return to the Hatters squad after missing the 1-0 win at Cambridge last weekend. The Town still have question marks over the availability of a host of players, including Paul Connolly, Curtley Williams, Paul Benson, Alex Lawless, Jake Howells and Luke Rooney. Shaun Whalley and Nathan Doyle featured for the development squad in a midweek draw at Portsmouth, while only Fraser Franks – who is recovering from a hernia operation – is definitely ruled out.
IN THE OTHER CAMP. Defender Andy Whing and goalkeeper Ryan Clarke remain out for the U’s despite featuring in Oxford’s development squad fixture against Southend in the week.
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 Kenilworth Road. 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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