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New loan signing from QPR's first interview at Kenilworth Road

31 January 2019

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The Hatters have completed a loan move to bring Queens Park Rangers defender Alex Baptiste to Kenilworth Road until the end of the season.

The 33-year-old centre-half, who can also play at right-back, brings a wealth of experience to the Town squad having played more than 500 times in a career that is now in its 17th season.

Having started out at hometown club Mansfield Town, where he played 198 times, Baptiste then made 190 appearances over five seasons at Blackpool, who he famously helped to promotion into the Premier League under Ian Holloway in 2009-10.

Since leaving Bloomfield Road in 2013, Baptiste played for Bolton, Blackburn on loan, Middlesbrough, both Sheffield United and Preston on loan before being reunited with Holloway at Loftus Road in 2017.

Baptiste has appeared 35 times for the Hoops in his 18 months there, and couldn’t hide his delight at joining a Hatters squad that is full of confidence following Tuesday night’s 3-2 win over second-placed Portsmouth in front of a capacity crowd at Kenilworth Road.

Baptiste said: “I’m very happy to be here and can’t wait to get started. I’ve kept an eye on the results and the lads have been doing unbelievable, so in whatever way I can help, I will do.

“When I got told about the potential interest I looked up Luton, and the club is obviously going places with the new stadium and looking at the training ground, it’s an exciting place to be.

“I’ve been involved in promotion pushes before and I know that March and April are the championship months, and it’s going to take everyone.

“The team have done unbelievably well. I looked at the result on Tuesday night and to beat second in the league was fantastic. The place is absolutely bouncing, you can tell that with the staff and the manager, so I am buzzing to be a part of it in whatever way I can.”

Alex has made just seven appearances for Rangers so far this season, so is fresh and ready to get out on the pitch at a stadium where he’s played before and knows he’ll be backed.

“Obviously any player wants to be in and around it, and the manager and the team are doing really well and I just couldn’t get in,” he said of the situation at Loftus Road. “I might not be able to get in here either while the team are doing so well, but I’ve just got to train hard, work hard and wait for my chance – and hopefully I’ll get one.

“I’ve played here a few times. It’s a tight little ground and the atmosphere is bouncing, and with the team doing so well, it’s packed houses every game, so it’s going to be brilliant.”

Alex will wear squad number 12 during his time at Kenilworth Road.

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