Jones de­light af­ter dou­ble blow

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Tom Phillips

NATHAN JONES praised his Lu­ton side af­ter they came back from the dou­ble blow of los­ing cap­tain Scott Cuth­bert to a neck in­jury and con­ced­ing a goal to beat Don­caster.

Play was sus­pended for nearly ten min­utes be­fore Cuth­bert was car­ried off. The Lu­ton skip­per suf­fered the in­jury in fail­ing to clear a cross that led to his Don­caster Rovers coun­ter­part James Cop­pinger’s opener.

“Hope­fully it’s not as bad as we think,” said Jones. “Ob­vi­ously with a neck in­jury you have to take some pre­cau­tion. They have to keep you straight and im­mo­bilised.

“That’s why it took a lit­tle bit of time, so I hope it looks worse than it was and we can get some news af­ter his visit in the hos­pi­tal.”

Jones felt his team were the bet­ter side over­all de­spite Danny Hyl­ton’s send­ing off, the striker shown a sec­ond yel­low card for throw­ing an ob­ject off the pitch in frus­tra­tion deep into in­jury-time.

“It’s a lack of dis­ci­pline, but I don’t want to make a big deal of it be­cause he’s been in credit with his per­for­mance and his at­ti­tude and his goals,” said Jones.

“It is a big game and a big re­sult for us. They’ve got some big play­ers but we showed good char­ac­ter af­ter the set­backs of con­ced­ing a goal and los­ing our cap­tain. We de­served to get the vic­tory and we

have set our­selves on the right track for the rest of the sea­son.”

Don­caster Rovers boss Dar­ren Fer­gu­son was left to rue missed chances as his side lost the lead de­spite a dom­i­nant per­for­mance in the open­ing 30 min­utes.

Cop­pinger put them in front min­utes af­ter hav­ing an­other goal dis­al­lowed for off­side, but Don­caster’s per­for­mance dipped and the game slipped away from them.

“I am dis­ap­pointed be­cause we were just not ruth­less enough,” said Fer­gu­son. “They were gone if we had got our sec­ond goal. Af­ter two min­utes we should’ve been two up. “We should have been out of sight af­ter 30 min­utes and that’s what has dis­ap­pointed me. We should’ve turned the screw but we didn’t. “Credit to Lu­ton, but their goals were poor. We haven’t been bat­tered by a bet­ter team and we must show more ruth­less­ness.” Fer­gu­son con­ceded the long break in play for Cuth­bert’s in­jury was a frus­trat­ing but piv- otal part in the game. “It seemed an eter­nity at a time when we were in com­plete con­trol,” he said. “The break helped them a lot more than it did us.”

Don­caster missed scor­ing one of the quick­est goals of the sea­son when John Mar­quis’ header met Frazer Richard­son’s cross but missed the open goal in­side the first minute.

A minute later, Lu­ton’s de­fence still had not wo­ken up and were for­tu­nate when Andy Wil­liams sent a header over the bar.

Cop­pinger fi­nally gave Rovers the lead when Scott Cuth­bert’s header landed in the mid­fielder’s path and he drobve it home.

Af­ter the break for Cuth­bert’s in­jury, for­tune turned Lu­ton’s way when Olly Lee’s low driven cross found Cameron McGee­han to give the hosts the equaliser.

And the Hatters got the lead af­ter some bril­liant play in mid­field from McGee­han found Hyl­ton, whose back-heel split open the de­fence and al­lowed Jack Mar­riott to slot home past the keeper just be­fore half-time.

Pelly-Rud­dock Mpanzu’s per­for­mance earned his side a penalty with ten min­utes left on the clock af­ter a daz­zling run past the de­fence, and gave McGee­han the chance to score his sec­ond of the game from the spot.

JACK’S THE LAD: Jack Mar­riott slides in Lu­ton’s sec­ond goal

PIC­TURES: TFLP Photographer

EYES WIDE SHUT: Lu­ton play­maker Cameron McGee­han is mobbed af­ter scor­ing the third from the penalty spot


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