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GRAEME JONES ON WEST BROM'S 'PREMIER LEAGUE PHYSICALITY'

15 August 2019

Hatters manager Graeme Jones is expecting to come up against a team with ‘Premier League physicality’ when the Town welcome West Bromwich Albion to Kenilworth Road on Saturday.

The Baggies are now in their second season in the Championship, having come down from the Premier League at the end of the 2017/18 campaign.

Jones is confident in his team’s ability though, having overseen a draw and defeat in the league, whilst winning his first game as a manager on Tuesday night as the Town beat Ipswich in the Carabao Cup.

He said: “West Brom have [got Premier League physicality] and we need to match that. When picking the team that needs to be at the forefront of our minds, we need to match that physicality, we need to play on top and many, many other aspects of the game that you take into consideration when you’re picking a team. I think Tuesday night was really good preparation for us, when you take stock after the event, we used 23 players in two games, it’s a healthy squad, it’s a healthy situation, so we will see where we are at the end of January.

"I feel as far as Luton Town is concerned, we are starting to maximise the group we have got here, we are starting to maximise the best team that you pick for each individual game. But it’s nice to have a group of players that are flexible enough tactically that you can choose from, so I was really pleased overall.

The game will also mark the first time Jones has come up against his former side, having parted ways with The Hawthorns based outfit in March earlier this year.

"The professional side of me just views it as another game on the calendar," Jones explained. "I think the emotional side of me remembers I had eight or nine really good months there. In general I really enjoyed the football club, really enjoyed it actually, and the people that worked there – but there’s nothing I wouldn’t give for three points at the weekend.

"We were fourth, 9th March with 61 points – I think we were top scorers in the Championship. So if Luton are in that position on 9th March I will take it right now! These things happen in football, I have moved on, I am just concentrating on Luton results and performances.

"I think we have got good familiarity with the West Brom team, I know first hand because I worked with them for nine months, I know these are capable boys. It scares you!

"Obviously I have got an insight into what their strengths are and what their weaknesses are. Every player has them no matter who you are – there are very few who are perfect.

"So we will be looking to nullify their strengths and exploit their weaknesses. Individually and as a team they have got less weaknesses than other teams because they are ex-Premier League and they will be expecting to be up there. They’ve spent a lot of money in the summer, I know they’ve brought in a lot of money as well. West Brom was a Premier League club for a long, long time as well, so I would imagine that is the intention."


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