Pearson not content to make up the numbers at Luton

Matty Pearson at pre-season training with fellow new signing Sonny Bradley
Matty Pearson at pre-season training with fellow new signing Sonny Bradley

New Luton centre half Matty Pearson has no intention of just making the numbers up after his move to Kenilworth Road last week.

The 24-year-old endured a difficult season when at then-Championship side Barnsley last term, making a mere 19 appearances throughout the campaign and just one start after Christmas.

I don’t want to be an in and out player, I’ve played for four or five seasons every game, and that’s how I want it to be.

Matty Pearson

That came in complete contrast to his previous four seasons, in which he played over 40 games each time, passing the half century for Accrington Stanley on two occasions as well.

Speaking to the News/Gazette about his decision to join Luton, he said: “Obviously the main thing for me is to get back into a team that’s on the up and getting playing again,so I’m made up to be here.

“I’ve gone in (to Barnsley), played a few games, then I got a little knock, the manager (Paul Heckingbottom) went and then after that, I just seemed to have limited game time.

“For me, I’d rather not play football than sit on the bench.

“You want to play football to play, you don’t play to make the numbers up. It’s one of those things where I didn’t want to stay at Barnsley and sit on the bench.

“You want to play every game and that’s the mentality I have.

“I don’t want to be an in and out player, I’ve played for four or five seasons every game, and that’s how I want it to be.

“I just need to get playing, play regularly football and the level will be a new one for me.

“I played Championship last year, but not many games, before that I was in League Two with Accrington and played every game.”

Pearson has been on Town boss Nathan Jones’ radar for a while, ever since being a first team regular at Stanley, and it was that which made the 24-year-0ld determined to move to Luton.

He said: “The first I knew of the interest was when I was leaving Accrington, that was the first time.

“Then I went to Barnsley in the Championship and it just came about that for one reason or another, it didn’t got as I planned at Barnsley.

“I managed to get myself here, so it’s worked out as Luton would have wanted.

“It’s one of the main reasons (for joining), as you don’t want to be going somewhere where the manager doesn’t know who you are.

“He’s obviously knows what I’m about and when a manager expresses that much interest and wants you to come, you don’t really regard any other clubs.

“You want to be playing where the manager wants you and that’s what it is.”

Breaking into a Town back-line which only conceded 46 goals in League Two last season and has been reinforced significantly with the addition of Plymouth Argyle’s Sonny Bradley won’t be an easy thing to do.

However, it’s a battle Pearson is ready for, as he said: “That’s what football’s about at the end of the day, it is a competition and you’ve just got to do what you can, give it your best shot and hopefully it all works out.”

Pearson can occupy a number of roles across the back four, with his versatility a key element to Jones’ lengthy pursuit, and when asked what his favoured role, he added: “I’m a defender, you won’t see me on the wing!

“Set-pieces, I like to try and get my head on the end of things, but I just like defending. People ask me my position, I don’t really know, I’d say my strongest position is probably centre back.

“But I’ve played left back quite a number of games and right back I’ve played quite a lot and I’ve even played centre midfield as well.

“I can play anywhere to be honest, anywhere he (Jones) puts me, I’ll do the best I can.

“Even if he put me in goal I wouldn’t be bothered, I’d try my best.”