Jones can't hammer leading scorer Hylton despite another suspension
Hatters boss Nathan Jones admitted he can't come down too hard on striker Danny Hylton despite picking up his fifth booking of the season during the 2-1 win at Leyton Orient yesterday afternoon.
The summer signing has been in superb form so far this term, netting eight goals in 12 league games to lead the Town scoring charts.
However, after putting Luton 2-0 up, Hylton then saw yellow in the 80th minute and will miss Mansfield Town’s visit to Kenilworth Road next weekend, his second ban of the campaign already.
Speaking afterwards, Jones said: “It’s frustrating and it makes you want to punch him at times, but he does what he does, he’s my main man, I love him, because he gets me goals, he leads the line, he’s tireless, he’s a nuisance, he’s the best in the league.
“That can’t tarnish an overall performance, he was magnificent.
“First half he needed to get in the game, second half he was outstanding. He was the type when I was a player you don’t relish playing against or you do because you like the challenge, someone who gives you a hard time.
“I want to hammer Danny but sometimes after the performance he puts in, it’s difficult.”
On the booking, which came when Hylton clashed with O’s winger Sandro Semedo as Luton went to kick off having seen Ollie Palmer cut the deficit 2-1, Jones continued: “That’s a frustrating thing and the frustrating thing for him was that he was saying it wasn’t him that caused it, but when the ref’s trying to book him and he’s trying to say no, sometimes it comes across in the wrong way.
“I don’t entirely know what it was for, but he’s in the moment and if he is then it will be discipline, but I’ll have to find out exactly what it is but he’s always in the mix and he’s that type of player.
“It’s hard to take that away from him because you get eight goals, he’s one of the top scorers in the league because he’s that type, but I need to curb something, because, at least now, after this game, we’ve got a bit of respite as he’s got five bookings to get, but he’s already missed two games through suspension at the moment and I don’t want him to miss any more.”
The caution was dished out by experienced official Trevor Kettle, who has long since incurred the wrath of Hatters fans for his dismissal of Sol Davis at Stoke City in 2007.
However, Jones added: “He came to me, not me to him, to be fair, he was explaining and I thought Trev did very, very well.
“I marked him highly at Cheltenham as I thought he did very well and today I thought he did excellently.
“He has that thing about him, it’s like he wants to be the main man and sometimes he has that aura.
“When he comes away, you know you’re going to get a proper performance from him as he doesn’t really care about anything, the crowd, managers or anything.
“He reffed it very, very well, he explained why he did it and I can understand it.”