Luton boss felt he was back in League Two during Gills win

Hatters boss Nathan Jones admitted it felt like was back in League Two again yesterday with the manner in which his side closed out their 3-1 win at Gillingham.

Sunday, 25th November 2018, 9:50 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th January 2019, 4:58 pm
Hatters boss Nathan Jones celebrates victory at Gillingham

After leading 3-0 through Elliot Lee’s double and Andrew Shinnie’s strike, Town were pegged back when Tom Eaves netted with 18 minutes to go.

However, Luton dug in to ensure a seventh win from nine games, as Jones said: “I don’t want to be disrespectful but they were pretty one dimensional.

“As long as you can win your headers, it was like a League Two game where we had to defend.

“They’re putting big sizes in there, Tom Eaves is a threat and they use him very effectively, everything went into him and then you’ve got to win your second balls.

“It’s a sporadic threat they have, but I think we saw it out on the whole as we scored three and they scored one.

“You can’t say that our keeper was any busier than theirs, and I’ve already mentioned about the first half opportunities.

“We had a few hairy moments as they went even more direct, brought a even more physicality on and we had to see out the game and I thought we did that.

“We had to use all our physicality and all our size to see out the game and I don’t think we saw it out with aplomb, but wensaw the game out and if someone said you’d come to Gillingham and win 3-1, I’d be delighted.

Town had given themselves real breathing space in the second period thanks to Lee’s double strike on 55 and 68 minutes, putting them 3-0 in front.

It was all part of the plan according to Jones, as he continued: “We said about these, we looked at stats, they either score or concede first 15 minutes (after half time).

“So what we didn’t want to do was allow them to score, as that would have given them a real lift, and a vociferous crowd behind them, then it might have been different.

“So we said, 'never mind if they’re going to come out and start fast, we start fast,' and I thought we did.

“I thought we started very well second half.

"A good little move that got us into that area as we could have scored just before it, but then a great ball across and Elliot’s there, which seems a simple enough tap in, but no, with the ball coming at that pace, showed real good quality.”

His second was even easier, but came after a quite superb run from Harry Cornick, outsprinting two markers to hit the inside of the post, Lee tucking home.

Jones said: “It was a fantastic stretching run and that’s what Harry’s in the team for.

“A real good stretching run, a shame he couldn’t finish it off, but I don’t really care who scores.

“Elliot’s on hand to tap in like all good scorers do, so very, very pleasing and effectively the game was over then.

"We're disappointed we didn’t keep a clean sheet because the last two now, teams have nicked a goal against us when we’ve been pretty much out of sight.

"So that’s the only disappointment but it sets us up beautifully. We've got a home game on Tuesday night, which hopefully we can finish the month off well."

Town had been set on their way Shinnie's excellent finish midway through the first half, the midfielder beating home keeper Tomas Holy from 20 yards.

Jones added: "It’s probably the one and only time first half that we were brave enough to get it down.

"It’s difficult when you come to places like this, these are scrapping for their lives, they’re a very direct side, they match us up with the diamond, so it’s about difficult to find spaces and we are the away team.

"But it was probably the only time we showed a real good bravery and a quality. We did that, and a wonderful, wonderful goal, but we still should be have been well out of sight at half time."