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Match Previews

CHECKATRADE TROPHY MATCH PREVIEW: LUTON TOWN V BARNET

A win for the Hatters tonight could see them progress to the knock-out stages of the competition

3 October 2017

Town welcome North London outfit Barnet to Kenilworth Road tonight as Nathan Jones' side could secure their place in the knock-out stages of the competition with a win this evening.

The Hatters won two points from their first game in this season's competition, drawing with Tottenham Hotspur U21s 2-2 before defeating them 4-2 on penalties to earn an extra point.

Barnet on the other hand played out a seven-goal thriller with AFC Wimbledon in their opening game, but were on the wrong end of a 4-3 defeat.

In order for the Hatters to progress tonight, AFC Wimbledon would need to defeat Spurs this evening, whilst Town would need to be victorious over Barnet.

In this eventuality, top spot in Southern Group F would then be decided in the final game of the group stage when Town head to the Dons at the end of this month.

THE GAFFER SAYS:

On tonight's opposition: "I can't second guess what Barnet are going to do, but they were strong in their last game, I am sure they're going to be of exactly the same strength this week, so that's all we can prepare for."

On supporters attending the game tonight: "We want to get in as many as we can because they are good games, we give them something new, something different. We treat the game well so it won't be a wasted one for them.

"The fans have been fantastic for us. They were wonderful on the weekend, even when we had that 10-minute spell (of Newport pressure), they got behind us, they lifted us. We came out of that spell fantastically well and finished the game strongly.

"I have no doubt people will turn up, I think it'll be an excellent game for them to turn up to."

On the Hatters' goalkeeper situation: "We are delighted. That's one area – well in all areas we are happy really – but we are delighted with the goalkeepers we have recruited, all three of them.

"Marek has taken the limelight in terms of being in the first team, but he's getting pushed every day by James and Harry. We explained the situation to all three of the keepers – they knew exactly where they were and James has been exactly where we knew he would be.

"We think we have got two number ones – we don't think we have got a number one and a number two, although it has turned out that way so far. But we believe we have got two number ones and a real one for development, so we are in a good place with our goalkeepers and long may that continue.

"We are delighted to have James here. He's an excellent goalkeeper, one of real pedigree at this level and he's fantastic. That's one area we are very, very pleased with."

WHO?

The Bees went through three managers last season – including former Town coach Kevin Nugent – before appointing now boss Rossi Eames on a permanent basis. Barnet have 11 points after 11 games so far in Sky Bet League Two and are without a win in their last five matches. They are currently 18th, but have had to do without their top scorer for the past four seasons, John Akinde, who has been out injured for all but 24 minutes of first team action this term. Summer signing Shaquile Coulthirst has filled in admirably though, netting eight times in 14 appearances so far.

WHEN AND WHERE?

Kick-off tonight is at 7:45pm at Kenilworth Road.

TICKET INFORMATION

Tickets for tonight's game are available at £5 for adults and £1 for Under-16s. The Main Stand and Main Stand Enclosure are open for home fans with cash turnstiles in operation at the Maple Road and Kenilworth Road entrances.

LAST TIME WE PLAYED?

The Hatters suffered their first of only two league defeats so far this season in mid-August at the Hive, when Jack Taylor's wonder strike saw Eames' side snatch all three points at the death. That marked Barnet's second win over the Hatters in nine games, with the Hatters having won six of those meetings and drawn one.

FOLLOW THE ACTION

Supporters who aren't heading to Kenilworth Road this evening can follow the Hatters' Twitter feed on @LutonTown, or stay up to date on the LTFC website in the match centre. Domestic and overseas iFollow Hatters subscribers can tune in for Simon Pitts' audio match commentary – but please note that as tonight's match is a cup competition, there will be NO live video stream for those based abroad.


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