Rea backed to feature heavily for Town this season

Hatters midfielder Glen Real has been backed to play a huge part in Town's League One campaign this season by boss Nathan Jones.

Tuesday, 14th August 2018, 8:25 am
Updated Sunday, 2nd September 2018, 10:05 pm
Glen Rea makes his first appearance of the season against Sunderland
Glen Rea makes his first appearance of the season against Sunderland

The 23-year-old has featured for just three minutes so far in the opening two games, coming off the bench during the 1-1 draw with Sunderland on Saturday for his first outing.

He was the leading appearance maker last term as Luton won promotion from League Two, racking up 50 games in total, as speaking about the former Brighton youngster, who signed a new two year deal in the summer, Jones said: “Glen’s in unbelievable form, he’s very, very unlucky, it’s only because probably the experience of Macca (Alan McCormack) at the critical time, but he’s been fantastic in training, he’s been fantastic in the games he’s played,

“He finished the season strong last year, he missed the first game last year and then got in and I envisage Glen paying lots and lots of games.

Hatters midfielder Alan McCormack

“I love Glen and he’s so versatile, he does a job wherever he plays and he wants to get better and he is getting better.

"So it’s a real tough call, but there’s tough calls all over the pitch, and I’ve just got to make sure I get the right one.”

It could be that Rea comes into the side for Alan McCormack at the Hawthorns this evening after the 34-year-old missed six months of last season due to calf and groin injuries, returning for the run-in and doing enough to earned a new contract.

He has played both of Town’s matches so far this term, looking strong on each occasion, though when asked if he could be given a rest against West Brom in the Carabao Cup, Jones continued: “It might not be, as we’ve got to pick a side accordingly.

“What we’ve not go to do is think,''we’ve got to rest him,' we’ve got to pick a side that can go and be competitive against a West Brom team.

“Obviously we don’t know what side they are going to put out, but we’ve prepared for their strongest 11 and we’ve got to pick a side that can compete with that.”

When asked how he thought McCormack had started the season, Jones said: “Fitness-wise, yes, very, very well.

"I thought he could have had more of an influence on the game on Saturday like a few of our players as I think although it was a real good point and we competed with a fantastic side, I feel that we didn’t bring our best side out on Saturday.

“Having looked at it again, a lot of things we do naturally, we didn’t do on the weekend and I think if we did those, it might have been able to change the outcome.”

Meanwhile, the likes of Sonny Bradley, Andrew Shinnie and Jake Jervis will all be vying to make the team after roles on the bench so far, as Jones added: “There’s probably another 13 who are desperate for a start, if you went all the way down to Frankie Musonda and people like Arthur Read.

“They’re desperate as well and have done really well in pre-season, so they’re all chomping at the bit.

“I can only pick 11 and that’s the problem I have at the minute, keeping everyone content.

“You’re never going to keep everyone happy, but you’ve got to keep them content, so that’s the decision.

“But we’ve also got to start winning football games, we’ve started well, had a little feel, had a tough start, but ultimately we’ve got to start winning games.”