Hayrettin believes Town are well placed for promotion push

Mark Cullen shoots
Mark Cullen shoots

First team coach Hakan Hayrettin believes Hatters are well placed going into the new year after picking up two points from two games over the Christmas period.

Draws against Wycombe Wanderers and Portsmouth saw Luton sitting in fourth place, just two points behind leaders Shrewsbury Town.

Hayrettin said: “We’re only two points off the leaders and what’s two points? It’s not a lot.

“You ask any Luton Town supporter would they have taken the position we’re in now at the start of the season?

“I bet you every single one of them would say yes. So it’s a credit to the team, credit to the guys who keep playing and that’s because of the desire and determination that we’ve got within in the camp that the manager has instilled in us to get where we are.”

Hatters had moved ahead through Luke Rooney against Pompey on Sunday but were pegged back by a scrappy Ryan Taylor goal 10 minutes before the break.

Hayrettin continued: “If you look over the course of the season and way up a percentage, goals we concede like that are very minimal.

“The ball’s come in, got a bobble, (Luke) Wilkinson’s tried to get a touch, and hasn’t so their player has tapped it in. We haven’t conceded many like that, so we’ll analyse it and go from there.”

After such a tough encounter at Wycombe in driving rain on a heavy pitch just two days earlier, Hayrettin was delighted with Luton’s fitness as in the second period, they looked like the only side going for victory.

He said: “We got a point, obviously we wanted three, it wasn’t to be, but we got stronger as the game went on, and that’s the most important thing to me. The work ethic that we have at the club is that everyone must work hard and one thing we have in abundance here is that never say did attitude.

“We keep driving on, keep pushing on and results reflect that. To play two tough games in three days and still to come strong at the death was a credit to the boys.

“It was a tense affair, sometimes it felt like a local derby and our crowd again was fantastic. We did whatever we could to get a result, but the effort and desire and determination, everything that typifies our club was there.”

Winger Luke Rooney admitted it had been a strain to play the two matches, but he wouldn’t have changed it.

He added: “In the second half, I did find it a little bit hard towards the end, but maybe that was just me having been out of the team so long through injury and the team doing so well.

“Two games in three days, I think it’s good, it’s what fans and everyone wants to see.

“We’d all rather play. It’s how it is, it’s the same for everyone.”