Hatters boss Joe Kinnear told the Press after the game that he had ordered his side to try to kill Watford off with a third goal in the second half – and that the Town’s win would land him in trouble with his mother!
Goals by Matthew Spring and Steve Howard saw the Town head into the interval two-up, but Kinnear would have preferred them to have put the game beyond doubt before Dominic Foley’s 75th-minute goal made it a nervy last 15 for the Hatters.
“At half-time I told the team I wanted them to try and get another goal,” said Kinnear. “If you attempt to hang on to a lead you rarely do, and I felt everything was going well.”
Kinnear was full of praise for the 4,404-strong travelling Town faithful in the crowd of 14,171 as the club stretched their unbeaten run on visits to Vicarage Road to eight matches, dating back to April 1988.
“The result was for the Luton Town supporters,” said the manager. “It was never a case of anything else really because I do not know how long we will stay in the tournament.
“It would probably have been better for me though if we had beaten somebody else. I grew up in Watford, went to school in Watford, played football for Watford boys and my mother and sister still live there.
“I’m in Watford every week and I’ll probably get a clip around the ear when I next go round to my mother’s.”
The Hatters would indeed exit the competition in the next round, losing 3-0 at Premier League Aston Villa. The league campaign would gather momentum after a poor start, with Kinnear’s newly-promoted side finishing a respectable ninth in the third tier.