Hatters would swap FA Cup glory for promotion in a heartbeat

Town’s players and management alike would most happily swap all the plaudits they have gained from this season’s FA Cup for winning promotion out of the Blue Square Bet Premier, writes Mike Simmonds.

The Hatters host Championship side Millwall in the FA Cup fifth round at Kenilworth Road this afternoon, but Tuesday night’s 1-0 defeat at Dartford sees them 14 points adrift of leaders Grimsby Town.

Managing director Gary Sweet said: “It’s reminded of us that the spirit of Luton Town Football club is very much still alive and kicking and thriving.

“Saturday’s game will be another proof of that, however it probably won’t be as important as last Tuesday’s game or next Tuesday’s game for us because our progression in the league is far more imporatnt to us as a board and as an entire club than the FA Cup.”

That view was echoed by midfielder JJ O’Donnell as on the club’s title hopes, he said: “It’s tall order, but I’d give up the FA Cup to be top of the league.

“I’d have happily gone out in the fourth round against Cambridge, to be number one in the league.

“It really is the club’s ambition to get out of this league.

“I’ve been here three seasons now. It’s a horrible league to get out of, it is difficult, we’re all fighting to get promoted. If it’s through the play-offs then it will be, but we’re still going for top spot.

“It’s never over till it’s over. Until mathematically we can’t catch the top spot then we’ll have to settle for the play-offs, but up until that day we will give it our all to be number one.”

Meanwhile, when asked what he would rather have this year, FA Cup success or promotion, striker Scott Rendell added: “Promotion all day long. I’d snap your hand off right now. If you offered me the FA Cup run or promotion, I would take promotion every day of the week.”

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