A huge thank you to all those who contributed
Luton Town Football Club would like to acknowledge the fantastic support of the Loyal Luton Supporters’ Club for the fundraising efforts to offset the £15,000 fine issued to the club by the EFL for fielding understrength sides in the Checkatrade Trophy.
In November it was announced that the Town would receive the highest possible sanction for not adhering to the competition rules with team selections for the matches against Gillingham, West Brom Under-21s and Millwall in the group stage.
Of course, we progressed through that group with a game to spare, with manager Nathan Jones handing senior debuts to many of the talented youngsters who caught the eye in the Town youth team’s run to the FA Youth Cup quarter-final and league and cup double success last season.
At Gillingham, Jones fielded nine homegrown products, with eight of the starting line-up aged 20 or under. Against both West Brom and Millwall, seven of the players on show came through the Town academy.
Loyal Luton have been in touch to confirm that they would be pledging £5,000 towards the fine, with spokesman Dave Alexander saying: “Loyal Luton have been long-time supporters of youth development at the football club, and when the fine was announced, a number of members and the committee suggested a fundraising page to help pay part of the fines imposed as we viewed it unfair the club were punished for playing young English players.
“Within 24 hours a couple of thousand of pounds had been donated, and by the end of the month – and in the run up to Christmas – just over £4,800 was raised by over 250 different individuals. Loyal Luton have covered the JustGiving costs and fees, and rounded the amount to £5,000.
“Hopefully this means the club can continue to play the younger players from our famous and revered youth set up in the EFL Trophy, and help to support the club in continuing to blood these young homegrown players, the lifeblood of many lower league clubs.”
All at Kenilworth Road thank Loyal Luton for their efforts and solidarity against the competition rules which penalise EFL clubs giving their young players a chance, while inviting EPPP1 Academy teams into the competition to do exactly that.