Jones thrilled the monkey is off Luton’s back as Town end two year run

Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu celebrates victory at Oxford

Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu celebrates victory at Oxford

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Luton Town boss Nathan Jones was delighted his side finally got the ‘monkey off their back’ after coming from behind to win against Oxford United on Saturday.

Hatters had failed to triumph after conceding the first goal since their return to the Football League, as you had to go way back until a 4-1 victory over Forest Green Rovers in the Conference on April 21, 2014, with recently crowned Championship Player of the Season Andre Gray on target.

Olly Lee scores Town's second at Oxford

Olly Lee scores Town's second at Oxford

Since then, Luton had gone behind in 38 games, taking just eight points in that time, losing a hefty 30 times.

But this time, although Oxford broke the deadlock in the opening two minutes, Joe Pigott netted twice, with Olly Lee on target too as boss Nathan Jones said: “I would have preferred not to, as we have fallen behind in other games and haven’t won the game.

“We could have done it at Barnet, should have done it at Barnet, but we didn’t, but if you’re going to be a top side in any league, in any division, in any country, then you have to be able to come from behind.

“You have to be able to keep leads when you’re under pressure, have to have the confidence.

“It’s the monkey off the back again, we keep ticking boxes like that, but it was good to do it in this kind of game.”

Nathan Jones

“I said to them at half time, we’re going to have to learn to be in front and when sides throw stuff at you and gamble up, especially in this league, when they go long and they fight and there’s a lot of random events, we then have to show quality, and impact, we have to do that, we have to learn.

“So it’s the monkey off the back again, we keep ticking boxes like that, but it was good to do it in this kind of game.”

Midfielder Alex Lawless who has been with the club ever since the poor sequence started, didn’t feel it was going to one of those days again when Hylton netted early on.

He continued: “I didn’t sense it, I felt as though we didn’t seem to show that that affected us, which is very good and a step in the right direction and it proved that way in the end.

“It was far from what we wanted and if anything, the complete opposite to what we had planned.

“But we’ve got ourselves out of that and I’m sure it will make people want to go into the future to make it not happen again.”

Meanwhile, striker Joe Pigott couldn’t quite believe it had been so long for Town to achieve the victory, as he said: “Is it really? Blimey, what a stat that is, two years?

“I didn’t even think about that, well that’s that one ticked off then.

“It’s just the belief that counts and I didnt hear anything about it. Some people might think about it, but you just need to keep your head down and think it’s going to come good.”

Although delighted to end the sequence, Jones was frustrated by the start his side made once more, particularly, after putting so much preparation into the opening 10 minutes.

He added: “We had a horrific start. We plan our starts, but we did everything we could to hand them a good start and they got it.

“Then you’re thinking, the side they are Oxford, because they’re an excellent side, whatever happens, they’re an excellent side, probably for me the best side in the league.

“They have threats from everywhere they play, they can counter attack you, they have wide threats, central threats, combination, they score goals, they’re an excellent side.

“You’re thinking that goal might gee them up and do they go on? But we responded fantastically well, we scored mistake from the keeper, but we’ve had to suffer from people as mistakes have cost us and then we’ve scored some wonderful goals.

“I thought we deserved that, thought we were outstanding, hit them on the break, and apart from a little bit more ice cold quality which we ask, we’d have gone away and scored more.”