Wanted man Smith was never going to leave Hatters

Jonathan Smith saw this superb volley hit the bar on Tuesday night
Jonathan Smith saw this superb volley hit the bar on Tuesday night
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Hatters boss Nathan Jones admitted he was never looking to get Jonathan Smith move away from Kenilworth Road this season.

The 30-year-old only started one of Luton’s opening 22 league games, with a number of clubs contacting Luton over his availability.

Absolutely no chance of us ever letting him go from our squad because we know how important he is.

Nathan Jones

However, Jones was never considering allowing Smith leave, with the popular midfielder now winning his place back in the side, starting five of Luton’s last seven league matches.

The Luton chief said: “He’s done very well, but we knew that. A squad takes you through a season, not half a season or first 10 games and we know people are going to have dips in form.

“We know what Jonathan gives us and we need him in the squad. We had a lot of enquiries about Jonathan, ‘can we have him? Can we take him?’

“But absolutely no chance of us ever letting him go from our squad because we know how important he is.

“I’m pleased that he’s getting the game time now and doing well, but it’s what I expect from him.

“There’s a lot of improvement from him, he’s still at an age where he can improve because we want him to be even better than he is

“He’s consistent and we know we’re going to get a work-rate and so on, now we want to add to his fluency, add goals to his game as well, because he gets into situations.

“It was a great strike the other day that hit the bar and the week before he had an opportunity. He’s a valued member of our squad and one we’re delighted we’ve got.”

Another midfielder who is also starting to show some of his best form now is Jordan Cook, who notched his third goal of the campaign with a fine strike against Yeovil in the 5-2 Checkatrade Trophy triumph on Tuesday night.

Jones added: “He plays in an advanced position and is one of our best technical players, so we do expect quite a lot from him.

“We want productivity from him, he’s one of the best technicians at this level, that’s why we have him, he can do everything.

“But what we want from him is a consistent level and to keep adding to it. He’s contributing week in week out.

“He’ll get there, once he gets used to everything, he’ll get better.”