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Club News


30 October 2018

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The Hatters development squad drew 3-3 with Southend United in the EFL Central League at the Brache earlier on this afternoon, as Marek Stech and Lloyd Jones got their first minutes under their belts since surgery.

After going behind after 30 minutes, the Town bagged three goals in four minutes just before the break to put themselves in control.

However, Southend replied with two quickfire goals in the 66th and 67th minute to take a point from the game.

Connor Tomlinson had the first opportunity of the fixture, firing over from 20 yards after Lloyd Jones' lovely floated ball forward found the striker just five minutes in.

The Town went close again five minutes later when Arthur Read majestically turned three Southend defenders on the far side of the box, before cutting in on his left foot, but his strike was deflected behind for a corner.

Stech was forced into a decent save when Tom Clifford bent a free-kick from 25 yards over the wall - the keeper getting two strong palms on it to stop it flying into the top right corner.

Aaron Jarvis thought he'd won a penalty when he was tripped as he brought down Corey Panter's pass, but the referee waved away the protests and the Shrimpers took the lead just three minutes later, as Clifford found the back of the net with a free-kick, finding the bottom right corner.

The Hatters were back on level terms with four minutes of the first half to go as a well worked corner saw Read cross in for Jones to fire in from close range – a goal that was the cherry on top of a fine performance from the 23-year-old.

Kazenga LuaLua put the Town in the lead three minutes later as he pinched the ball on the edge of the box, before driving an effort into the bottom left corner, with Tomlinson then getting the hosts' third as he flicked in Toby Byron's low cross from the left.

Stech was forced into a brilliant save as he palmed away Adamdou Ba's effort from just inside the box, before Jones cleared Hutchinson's follow-up off the line ten minutes into the second half.

Southend weren't to be denied though and got back into the game six minutes after the hour mark as Isaac Hutchinson found the bottom right corner, before Norman Wabo scored an identical goal just a minute later to bring the game level.

Alan McCormack nearly grabbed a late winner as he got on the end of Jack James' right wing cross, but the Irishman's header smacked off the crossbar and away from goal.

Joaquin Gomez, who took the team on the day said: "It was a competitive game. I thought we dominated most of it. We went about it in the right way, we prepared properly, I thought they players worked really hard. We setup well, we pressed well, we just went through a spell and we didn't deal with it very well.

"The goalkeepers we have at are at a high level and Marek iss coming back from injury and needed minutes. He helped us get through the second half with some of his saves. Lloyd was really dominant throughout the game, one of the main things was for him to lead that back four. He did really well, he won his headers, he kept people around him well balanced, on the ball we know what he's like and he moved it really well."

The Town XI: Stech, James, Jones, Panter, Byron, McCormack, Peck, Read, LuaLua, Jarvis, Tomlinson (Neufville 76).

On the bench: Isted, Kalonda, Swindells, Richardson, Neufville.


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