Magic Matty hails Hatters’ back-line during stalemate

Matty Pearson dons his magic hat to head clear against Rochdale
Matty Pearson dons his magic hat to head clear against Rochdale

Hatters centre half Matty Pearson praised his side’s defensive display during their 0-0 draw at Rochdale on Saturday.

The visitors had 22 shots, with six on target, compared to the Hatters’ nine attempts, only two troubling home keeper Brendan Moore, but Town managed to hold on for a point.

They’ve not been able to score, but yet again we’ve had bodies on the line.

Matty Pearson

That they did was down to keeper James Shea’s first half efforts, plus an improved defensive display in the second period.

Pearson said: “It was a tough 90 minutes, Rochdale are a good team.

“We defended well as a team, both teams had chances, so it was probably a fair point. They’ve not been able to score, but yet again we’ve had bodies on the line.

“Sheasy was magnificent, you’ve seen the goalmouth scramble and sometimes you have those games and it was one of those games.

“At least we got a point out of it, that was the positive.”

On the performance of Shea, who produced a wonderful double stop in the first half, Pearson continued: “That’s what you count on him for. He’s a goalkeeper, he’s there to make saves and I’m made up for him, it was a superb one.

“As a defender myself you always want your goalkeeper to help you out now and again and he’s definitely helped us out.”

Town also had to play out the final 15 minutes with a man down after Danny Hylton was dismissed for a lunging challenge on Ian Henderson.

It meant that Pearson move into the centre of midfield for the closing stages, once captain Alan Sheehan replaced James Collins.

The change in role was of no concern for the summer signing though, as he said: “It was natural, I’ve played there when at Halifax three or four years ago. That was the only position I played, centre midfield, so it’s nothing new.

“I know the position, I’ve just not played it for a while, so it was nice to get back into the centre of midfield.

“That’s how it goes when you go down to 10 men. It’s not ideal and that extra man for them helps, but everyone put a shift in and we got the point.”

Pearson is now the proud owner of his own ‘magic hat’ song, and he certainly needed it to head clear during the second half as Dale went direct to Calvin Andrew.

On his newfound terrace fame, Pearson said: “I didn’t realise at first it was about me.

“It’s always nice to have a song, but the main thing was keeping that momentum and not getting beat.

“I’ve had one (a song) at Accrington before, but I’m at Luton now and I’m doing my best for Luton.

“It’s brilliant for the players to play in front of such a good crowd and have such a good following.”

The point made it 10 from 12 as Luton stayed fifth, Pearson adding: “We’ve come off the back of a good week and another point here away from home is not too bad.

“We’re just happy the momentum rolled on and we’re still unbeaten.”