Justin ready for some play-off revenge over Blackpool

James Justin gets a cross in against Bristol Rovers
James Justin gets a cross in against Bristol Rovers

Hatters defender James Justin is hoping to administer a dose of revenge to Blackpool when the two sides clash at Kenilworth Road on Saturday.

The 21-year-old was part of the side who saw their hopes of reaching the League Two play-off final at Wembley cruelly dashed when the Tangerines were last in town back in May 2017.

That night, Luton were 3-1 up, 4-3 ahead on aggregate in their play-off semi-final second leg.

However, a massive error by keeper Stuart Moore, who came dashing from his goal to miss his punch, drew the tie level, Armand Gnanduillet's header dropping into the unguarded net.

He then couldn’t get out of the way of Jordan Cook’s goal-line clearance in stoppage time as Blackpool made it 3-3 to go through themselves, leaving Luton devastated.

Justin said: “We’ve got a lot of lost love over the last few years, obviously with what they did to us over the play-offs.

“But we’ve moved on from that and hopefully we can show the fans the free-flowing football as we showed them in the first half (at Bristol Rovers).”

Striker James Collins who wasn’t at the club in those days, continued: “Blackpool are a good side

“We drew 0-0 with them away from home and they’ve got some good quality.

“They’re a tough team to break down but I think we’re confident at home always that we can pick up points.

“It’s a massive game as everyone’s back playing and it’s another chance for us to make another statement.”

With Luton having a great chance to set a new club record of 28 league games unbeaten, Justin believes they can do that, and has targeted avoiding defeat until May.

He said: “That’s what we want to do, continue it to next season and see what happens.

“There’s no reason why we can’t, we’re looking at the next fixtures and we fancy ourselves really.

“At the moment we just feel like we’re going to win every game and that’s the way we go into every game thinking that and just to start every game as fast as possible.

“Mick (Harford) and the coaching staff take all the pressure of us and let us express ourselves.

“We’ve been doing that for the last few months I guess since our old gaffer left and it’s just a credit to the coaching staff and the players for what we’ve continued.”

Meanwhile, on Saturday's 2-1 win at Rovers., Justin added: “We just defended excellently as a whole team.

“It starts from the guys up top, they must have put in some serious mileage because they were everywhere, while we just showed the clinical edge we had at times.

"It seemed like the back two just kept on heading the balls out to relieve the pressure from us, so it was a good defensive performance in the second half.

"First half was free-flowing, we played excellent and it could have been more really.

“We were just switching the ball at will really, Shins (Andrew Shinnie), Bez (Luke Berry) and Pelly (Mpanzu) were getting on the ball whenever they wanted to and we were doing damage in wide area.

"They sucker punched us at the end of the half, we’ve always got to keep switched on and they just showed us how dangerous they are.

“It’s the worst time to concede, everyone knows that, except for the last minute of the second half.

"But everyone just took it on the chin, 'keep your heads up and stick together/'

"That’s been our motto for the last few months, we just stuck together whatever happens, we all have to help each other and we did that second half.

"We dug in excellently, think they had one real chance where (Jack) Stacey’s blocked it, as it was an excellent defensive performance."