Brabin admits Hatters lacked a cutting edge

FRUSTRATED Hatters boss Gary Brabin was left to lament a lack of creativity and inventiveness in the final third as his side were held to a bore draw by Mansfield Town in front of the Premier Sports cameras at Kenilworth Road last night, writes Mark Wood.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 26th January 2012, 11:09 am

A number of refereeing decisions seemed to go against Luton as midfielder Adam Watkins was denied a ‘stonewall’ penalty, but they were also indebted to captain George Pilkington who twice cleared efforts off the line.

There was also a further worry for the Hatters as recovering striker Amari Morgan-Smith hobbled off in the second half after feeling the hamstring injury that had sidelined him for over two months.

On the game itself, Brabin said: “I think that’s the word we’ve used in the changing room, frustrating.

“We started the game with our three leading goalscorers in attack and one thing I felt really confident coming into this game was that we were going to score goals. On the night the thing that’s let us down was that our quality or inventiveness in the final third wasn’t good enough. We’ve scored a lot of goals of late and have been creating chances. Mansfield are a tough side to break down. We’ve got to be better than that, certainly if we are wanting to get promotion.

“I’ve been saying it all season, we need to be ruthless in the box and I don’t even think it’s a case of that. I just don’t think we created enough in the final third.

“I thought the lads worked hard and I thought certainly in the middle of the pitch we played some nice football. It was good, but I felt we lacked that little something special which you need in the final third when you play a team that are tough to break down.”

Twice keeper Kevin Pilkington was rescued by his namesake on the line, but Brabin backed his under-fire keeper who was also unlucky with two of the goals in the 3-3 draw at Southport on Saturday.

Brabin added: “He’s made his first mistake. I think it’s been well highlighted. It’s unfortunate, but he’s kept another clean sheet so I’m sure from his point of view he will be delighted he has kept another clean sheet.

“We can’t pinpoint our lack of creativity in the final third on Pilks.”

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