Lu­ton go back top thanks to rout

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Tim Ever­shed

NATHAN JONES saw his side climb back to the top of League Two and pro­claimed the em­phatic vic­tory that saw them do so as the best yet un­der his lead­er­ship.

Striker Danny Hylton’s hat-trick put Wy­combe to the sword. The 27-year-old scored two from close range and added a late penalty, with Jor­dan Cook adding a fourth on the break in the fi­nal minute.

Wy­combe did pull a goal back just af­ter the hour mark through Matt Bloom­field, but there was lit­tle damp­en­ing Jones’s mood.

“It was an ex­cel­lent team per­for­mance, the best per­for­mance since I’ve been here,” Jones said. “We were ex­cel­lent and we came right out of the blocks and were scin­til­lat­ing at times.

“We got the goal, missed the penalty but still should have been out of sight by half-time. That can come back and haunt you but it didn’t.

“We were won­der­ful around the box and caused them all sorts of prob­lems. When they came out and at­tacked us we were dev­as­tat­ing on the break. We need our wide men to cre­ate chances and when that hap­pens Danny will score and I couldn’t be hap­pier.”

Wy­combe man­ager Gareth Ainsworth made four changes as he tried to find a win­ning for­mula, but they had lit­tle ef­fect as Lu­ton set the tone from the first whis­tle.

The open­ing goal came af­ter just ten min­utes as Pelly Rud­dock popped up on the right wing and nut­megged Sido Jom­bati be­fore his cross was met at the near post by Hylton’s glanc­ing header.

Lu­ton con­tin­ued to pile on the pres­sure and were awarded a penalty as Cook burst into the box and Stephen McGinn brought him down. Cameron McGee­han stepped up but his weak ef­fort was well saved by Black­man.

The Hat­ters were al­most made to pay for their waste­ful­ness in front of goal as Wy­combe fash­ioned a rare chance at the other end and Chris­tian Wal­ton pushed Bloom­field’s low drive round the post. But Lu­ton con­tin­ued to dom­i­nate af­ter the break and Jom­bati was forced to clear off his own line as first Jack Mar­riott and then McGee­han put ef­forts on tar­get from close range.

It was only a mat­ter of time be­fore the home side made their pres­sure count and when Black­man could only parry McGee­han’s shot it was Hylton who was on hand to pro­vide a sim­ple fin­ish into an empty net.

The two-goal lead only lasted seven min­utes as Bloom­field latched onto Paul Hayes’ flick on and­fired past Wal­ton with a fierce, low shot.

The goal gal­vanised the vis­i­tors who en­joyed their best spell of the game. Sub­sti­tute Garry Thomp­son came clos­est to lev­el­ling as he barged past Dan Potts and stung Wal­ton’s hands with pow­er­ful shot.

It was a brief respite though as Will De Hav­il­land was pun­ished for drag­ging Hylton back in the box and the striker com­pleted his hat-trick from 12 yards with two min­utes left. And Cook com­pleted the rout in the fi­nal minute with a calm, low fin­ish.

Ainsworth said: “That’s why Lu­ton Town are where they are. I think we have just seen the cham­pi­ons and that is as good a per­for­mance as I’ve seen in League Two.

“The first 20 min­utes there was only one team in it, they were far bet­ter than us and carved out a num­ber of chances. Once we locked onto them we did OK and cre­ated some chances of our own.

“Sec­ond half the early goal was a sucker punch but af­ter that it felt like a cup tie and when we got a goal back I thought it was only a mat­ter of time un­til we equalised. The sec­ond penalty was an­other sucker punch and if the ref got it right then it was poor de­fend­ing.”

THREE AND EASY: Danny Hylton com­pletes his hat-trick from the penalty spot af­ter he was fouled late on


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