Hatters boss Nathan Jones hailed young goalkeeper Jonathan Mitchell after picking up a clean sheet on his Football League debut against Leyton Orient yesterday.
The 21-year-old had only signed on loan from Championship side Derby County the day before, but went straight into the Town side due to Mark Tyler’s pending move to Peterborough.
On Mitchell, who has only played once in the FA Cup for the Rams, he said: “That’s one hell of a debut. To come away, Leyton Orient, with the hostility, the amount that we put in, his decision-making, his presence there.
It’s only his debut, only one game, we’re not getting carried away, but that’s one hell of a debut, trust me on that.
“We believe he’s improved our 11 and without getting carried away, the kid was outstanding.”
Captain Scott Cuthbert echoed his manager’s glowing praise of the youngster, who hadn’t even had a training session with his new team-mates.
“It’s only his debut, only one game, we’re not getting carried away, but that’s one hell of a debut, trust me on that.”Nathan Jones
He continued: “He was different class, really, really good. He was commanding, came out for a lot of balls and helped us out, especially early on, so he had a great debut.
“When you’ve got a player of that quality, as long as we say before the game, be loud, be confident, be commanding, come for crosses if you need be, if we’re too deep tell us and he was. That’s exactly what it is and he fitted in brilliant, it showed from his performance.
“That was a little glimpse of how good he was, obviously the manager knows him and I thought he was really, really good.”
One feature of Mitchell’s performance was his willingness to come off his line when Orient went long, and one such moment of bravery saw a nasty clash of heads with Shaun Brisley, as the O’s player was eventually stretchered off.
Cuthbert said: “It takes the pressure right off you as a defender if your goalkeeper comes for crosses.
“He had a nasty head knock with the boy, the fans thought it was a fist, but it was actually his head on the boy’s head. So he’s done well to recover from that too.”
Meanwhile, the recalled Dan Potts also praised Mitchell, adding: “I didn’t know much about him, he literally rocked up at the hotel this morning.
“I was like all right, but credit to the lad, for his league debut as well, I thought he was different class.”