Derry not pinning the blame
CAMBRIDGE boss Shaun Derry refused to blame referee Andrew Madley for denying his side a winner.
The visitors looked to have scored when Lewis Page’s cross was turned in by recent recruit Ben Williamson just after the hour mark, only to see the strike not given as Madley had blown a fraction earlier for Paul Benson’s lunging foul on Page.
“I’m not one for saying they should be getting everything right,“said Derry.“The game is played at such a high intensity now that any split-moment decision can be in the back of the net.
“Obviously there’s an element of disappointment, but I’m not going to make a big deal of it as I’ve made so many mistakes in the past and I’m sure will continue to make mistakes in the future. I was pleased with how we responded after the goal wasn’t given.”
Having watched his players secure a draw in his first game in charge, Hatters manager Nathan Jones said: “Our players would have heard the whistle, he blew up early. They (United) will be aggrieved, but he blew immediately. If he let it go and then they scored that’s another matter, but I heard the whistle, and our players would have.
“It’s a start for us. I asked them to give me a work-rate and the crowd saw that today.We had a work-rate and a desire about us and it was a good clean sheet.”
Jones was dealt an immediate blow after just eight minutes when goalkeeper Mark Tyler went down with a back injury and Ellliot Justham took his place.
Cambridge had the first effort of note, Page firing over the top from distance, before Town were forced into another change on 20 minutes, with winger Danny Green carried off and Josh McQuoid brought on.
Jack Marriott then thought he had opened the scoring only to see his acrobatic volley disallowed for offside, with U’s coming close too, Robbie Simpson firing over and Williamson wide.
Hatters could not create anything decisive though, Jonathan Smith coming close from range, as was Luke Berry with a 20-yard volley.
Luton started the second half strongly with Ryan Hall inches wide on the half-volley, the winger also heading over moments later, while McQuoid curled over the top.
U’s weathered the storm though and upped the ante, and were denied only by the whistle of Madley, who instantly put his heads in his hands, realising his error.
And the Hatters almost claimed all three points when Jake Howells’ shot was saved low down by Norris, and the spoils were shared.
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