Nathan celebrates a year in charge with another trip north
As the Hatters take the trip up to Lancashire for the third consecutive month tomorrow, this time to take on Accrington Stanley in the Emirates FA Cup third round, Hatters boss Nathan Jones has issued a message to the fans on his first anniversary in charge.
Jones took over a year ago today and speaking to lutontown.co.uk after this morning’s training session at Kenilworth Road, Jones said: “It’s a been a great year. I’ve really enjoyed it and I’ve learned a lot.
“I’d like to thank everyone at the club for firstly bringing me here, and giving me the welcome and the daily pleasure I have.
“I’d like to thank the fans who have been absolutely magnificent with me from day one when I first came in.
“They’ve got right behind the team, they’ve shown me a real patience and a desire, and one thing I will say is that I won’t let them down.
“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my first year in charge, and long may that continue.”
While the opening of the transfer window has seen the Hatters bring in attacking midfielder Lawson D’Ath (pictured above) from Northampton Town in time to be eligible for the game, tomorrow’s opponents Stanley have also acted quickly, signing two Hull City players on loan.
Defender Harvey Rodgers, who has come through the Tigers’ academy, and striker Jonathan Edwards, who scored once in eight appearances for Dunstable Town last season, have joined up with Accrington until the end of the season.
Town have already faced John Coleman’s side once this season when Stanley made the trip to Kenilworth Road in November for their Sky Bet League Two fixture, which finished with a 1-0 win for the Hatters, courtesy of a close-range finish from Cameron McGeehan (pictured below celebrating the goal).
The midfielder had an operation on Wednesday on a broken leg which he suffered against Portsmouth on Monday and joins Danny Green, Dan Potts and Nathan Doyle on the injury list for Town, as Jones’ side begin life without their 11-goal second-top scorer for the rest of the season.
Stanley’s run to this stage of the competition has been fairly impressive, having beaten League One opposition Bradford City 2-1 away, before putting three past Woking in the second round without reply.
Town on the other hand travelled to Exeter City in the first round, with a Danny Hylton brace and Glen Rea finish enough to earn them a place in the second round.
They followed the win up in Devon with a 6-2 victory over Solihull Moors at Kenilworth Road.
Accrington’s loss to the Hatters in November saw them fall down the table, as it triggered a run of seven matches without a win, six of which were defeats. Prior to the trip to the Kenny, Coleman’s team were ninth, but they now occupy 21st place in the league.
Their form has recovered though, having beaten Crewe on New Year’s Eve and drawing 2-2 with Hartlepool on Monday.
Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s match in his press conference on Thursday, Jones said he is expecting a difficult game at the Wham Stadium and he is taking nothing for granted.
“Hopefully we will get into the next round, but they will have the same aspirations as us,” Jones said. “We are looking forward to the game, it’s the third round of the FA Cup, so it’s important. We have had to earn our way here and so have Accrington.
“It’ll be an interesting game, Accrington we know very well. We know it’ll be a difficult game.”
Town have defeated Stanley twice in the clubs’ histories, they have contested three draws and Accrington have come out on top on two occasions.
Tomorrow’s Emirates FA Cup match will be refereed by Darren Deadman, who has overseen 28 games so far this season, handing out 99 yellow cards and five red cards.
If you are unable to make it to the game, follow the live Wall on the LTFC website for live updates. If you are a Hatters Player subscriber, Simon Pitts will be at the Wham Stadium to give his full match commentary.
Fans can pay on the day, but there will not be cash turnstiles. Any Hatters fan wanting to purchase a ticket tomorrow must go to the portakabin behind the away stand to buy them.
- Adult: £20
- Senior 64+: £15
- Student (with ID): £15
- Under 18s: £15
- Under 12s: £10.