Muddy marvellous Hatters are hailed

Muddy marvellous Hatters displayed their Skrill Premier title credentials with a dogged and determined 2-1 victory over Barnet in diabolical conditions at Kenilworth Road on New Year’s Day, writes Mark Wood.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 2nd January 2014, 1:00 pm
No Caption ABCDE
No Caption ABCDE

Town played the conditions brilliantly for the majority of the game and skipper Ronnie Henry was full of praise for his side.

He said: “What a great game to be honest with you. That’s football isn’t it. I think we all know the pitch was not in a great state. All that matters are the three points at the end of the day.

“The lads dug in and gave everything they’ve got like they’ve done every other games this season. So credit to them and it’s just a great feeling at the moment to be top of the league.”

Striker Paul Benson concurred, as he said: “We can keep talking about the weather and the pitch and whether it should be played or not, but the fact of the matter is we’ve won a game of football. We’ve won it 2-1 against a good side. So happy days. We’re four points clear now so it couldn’t have gone any better for us.”

But Henry felt Luton’s success went further than just the 11 players on the pitch, as he continued: “What can I say? The whole squad and management of everyone, we’re in it together, the crowd, we were just out there fighting for every ball, every inch and you can see it in us we are desperate to get where we want to be and to be honest with you it’s going to take a strong, strong side to beat us at the moment, because we’re on song and we’re fighting and we’re full of energy and we’re backing each other up and I think it shows on the pitch. And all credit to the lads, they’ve done unbelievable today.”

The game was Luton’s seventh straight win and 18th league match unbeaten as they continue to build up a head of steam.

Henry said: “The gaffer says to us the momentum is hard to stop. I’ve been in this situation before at Stevenage where we went I think 24 unbeaten and then Luton beat us.

“It’s like a train, when it gets going the gaffer says it’s hard to stop and we’re on that train at the moment, we’re moving in the right direction and we’re solid at the moment.

“But we know every week we need to turn up because if we don’t you never know.”

It was the second time the Hatters had faced the Bees in just a matter of days, having won 2-1 at the Hive on Boxing Day in a game where popular Town midfielder Jonathan Smith suffered a double leg break.

Before the game Town’s players wore T-shirts in his honour, and Henry admitted doing it for him had spurred the Hatters on.

He added: “It is a motivating fact because Smudger is a great lad and he was one of us and he’s got injured and his season’s over through putting his body on the line for us lot.

“So we’ll pay him back. I’m sure he’s sitting at home watching the game and he’ll be up at that TV I’m sure at home wanting us to win every ball, every header and wishing us the best every week. I just hope he recovers well and the best of luck to him.”