Still: Bees clash shouldn’t have gone ahead

Hatters boss John Still didn’t think that the New Year’s Day clash with Barnet should have gone ahead, despite his side triumphing 2-1, writes Mike Simmonds

Wednesday, 1st January 2014, 7:19 pm
Andre Gray chases through the rain

Referee Kevin Johnson took the call to start the game despite plenty of standing water.

Goals from Andre Gray and Paul Benson saw Luton move four points clear of Cambridge, whose trip to Braintree was postponed.

On whether the game should have been played, Still said: “The ref asked before the game, and I said I don’t make the decisions.

“But the decision you’ve got to make is if you start it, you’ve got to finish, or don’t start.

“If you don’t start I’m not going to moan, I know the condition of the pitch, I’m not stupid. I said, it’s a difficult pitch and I don’t want you to feel under pressure from me.

“I think they (Barnet) were of the same ilk as me, but he decided to start and I think he had to finish.

“I don’t think the ball ran true from the first minute of the game. It was no less a lottery after 60 minutes than it was after 10 minutes.

“I counted four of our first seven passes never reached the target because the ball slowed down.

“It was a lottery for me from day one. We had to play today, kick it as far as you can and run after it.

“The great thing is we won and the application of both teams was fantastic, but the game was a lottery.”

On the hour mark it looked like the game was going to be abandoned as referee Johnson spoke to his assistants and both captains, but they eventually carried on to a conclusion.

Still continued: “I don’t know what he said, but when we scored our first goal, I said to the fourth official, that’s only conditions that have really made the goal.

“I thought the conditions were a little bit unfair because you can do all the right things and make a mistake.

“But we’ve played it, I’m delighted we won and thought everyone did everything I could have asked of them.

“The little thing that’s in the back of my mind, winners always find a way of winning.

“I always say that and we found a way of winning.

“You’ve got to win games in different ways, we’ve had to do something else today and the pleasing thing with this run is that all the teams we’ve beaten are in contention, that’s a plus.”

Still also paid tribute to the crowd, with over 7,500 inside Kenilworth Road once more.

He added: “They appreciate people working their socks and that’s what we did, we worked our socks off.

“It wasn’t a case of skills today, it was a case of effort and they were appreciative of that.”

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