Hylton thrilled to notch a first League One hat-trick of his career
Hatters striker Danny Hylton was thrilled to score his first hat-trick at League One level.
The forward, who started life as a pro with Aldershot in October 2006, has had a 12 year playing career so far, racking up over 400 appearances for clubs including Rotherham, Bury, AFC Wimbledon, Oxford, with 97 of them coming at Luton.
However, before the start of this season, Hylton had played just one game in the third tier of English football, that as a 62nd minute substitute for Rotherham in October 2013..
He scored a first League One goal at Peterborough on his second attempt for Town, also finding the net against Southend, before bagging his treble on Tuesday night, becoming Luton’s first hat-trick scorer at this level, since Steve Howard in November 20, 2004, that coming during a 4-1 triumph against MK Dons.
On the feat, his third in Luton colours too, having done so against Wycombe and Cambridge in League Two, Hylton said: “I played in League Two for a long time and managed to score a few goals.
“I’m just happy now that I’ve moved up a level, finally got the chance, and I’m scoring goals.
“I’ll keep trying to do that and when you’re playing in a team with such great players, such great ability, you’re going to get chances.
"You’ve just got to make sure you’re alive and sharp and try and take them.
“I’m a forward and I love scoring goals, so to score a hat-trick is a great feeling. It's a bit of a cliche, but the main things is we got the three points and moved up the league.”
The first of Hylton's trio came after a breathtaking counter attack which saw James Collins, Jorge Grant and then James Justin set up Hylton for a volley that was timed at hitting the net just seven seconds after winning the ball back.
He said: “We take big pride in our counter attack, we work on it a lot, it’s a big part of our game.
"We can keep the ball, be patient, break teams down, but we’re just as comfortable when we haven’t got the ball as we know we’ve got great players, quick players that can counter attack to huge effect.
"We showed it, it was a great counter attack, a great goal, the gaffer will be really pleased with that.
“JJ’s got great quality, left foot, right foot, it doesn’t matter. When he got it I was just praying he picked me out and he did.
"I wanted it to my foot, I didn’t have to break stride and just had to hit the back of the net.”
Hylton's second saw the striker peel off at the back post to be in the perfect place to convert Andrew Shinnie’s pull back from close range, as he continued: “It was bit of a counter attack wasn’t it.
"He’s got to the byline, again, I was praying that no-one got a touch on it and a great pull back.
"I just had to make sure I got good contact and hit the back of the net, so I’m happy.”
The third then saw Grant’s deep free kick met by Sonny Bradley and like all good strikers, Hylton was lurking to nod the ball over the line.
He said: “It was a great ball in, Sonny’s massive isn’t he, so you know he’s going to win headers and you’ve just got to try and find some space in the box.
"He’s got a great contact on it and I’m glad I managed to get good contact and see the ball hit the back of the net.”
Town had further chances later in the game, but couldn’t take them which was a slight frustration for Hylton, as he added: “That’s the only thing, the gaffer said to us in there, that’s the small bit of criticism he gave us, is that he’s a bit disappointed it wasn’t five or six.
"As four’s great, but five or six is a bashing isn’t it?
“We’re happy with it though, but we’ll pick the bones out of it and we can still be more clinical.”