Jones refutes talk Orient clash is season defining

Luton boss Nathan Jones
Luton boss Nathan Jones

Hatters boss Nathan Jones doesn’t believe that tomorrow’s trip to Leyton Orient will be a season-defining game for his side.

Luton head to Brisbane Road trailing Orient, who occupy the final play-off spot in League Two, by six points.

“It’s another three points, against a very difficult opposition, against an opposition who are in good form, like ourselves.”

Nathan Jones

Should Hatters win and other results elsewhere go their way, it could see them just three points off the top seven by 5pm on Saturday, while defeat could increase that gap to nine once more.

However, when asked if he thought the encounter could define Town’s season, Jones said: “No, not at all. So if we lose, or if we win, what does that mean? Is that going going to define our a season if we win and don’t pick up another point all season?

“Does that mean, well hang on, we said it was a season definer? It’s another three points, against a very difficult opposition, against an opposition who are in good form, like ourselves, so no, nothing like that.”

Jones also reaffirmed that he hasn’t made any mention of the play-offs to his side despite a run of three straight victories, which has increased their slim chances.

He continued: “We speak about Leyton Orient nothing more.

“We don’t speak about anyone after that, literally Leyton Orient, that’s all we speak. Any talk about that would be foolish.”

Jones expects to have a similar squad available to him that he selected for Tuesday night’s 1-0 win over Morecambe and is confident that after making three changes in midweek, they can cope with a third game in seven days.

He said: “We’ll see, because we’ve had big efforts from them, but it’s the same for Leyton Orient.

“Leyton Orient had have three games in a week, so it’s no different. That’s the rigours of English League football and I want us to have a team, I want us to have squad that can handle that, that can support that the rigours and demands of the league and they’re going to get tested on the weekend and we’ll see how they respond.

“A couple would have had knocks as it was a physical game (against Morecambe), and we had to put in a proper shift. So it’s a recovery process, dust them all down and we’ll see what we have.

“It’s important to have a squad that you’re happy with, we’ve got good numbers, what you have to have is balance as well.

“We used that this week in terms of freshening up from York, both just the number of games and we felt people were waning, so we gave them a little gee up if you like, that is important.

“I spoke to Alex Lawless because he was disappointed he didn’t start, but I felt he had lost the spark a little bit in terms of when he came back from his injury, I felt he really tried to get back quickly and the beauty of having a good squad is you can freshen things up

“The squad is so important as well, every sub at the minute who’s come on has contributed and impacted which is what you want.”

On the progress of longer term injur concerns Nathan Doyle and Josh McQuoid, Jones added: “They are getting close, which is a plus point. They’re a couple of weeks off yet, but they are getting close.”