Still holding fire on additions as he gives players a chance

Hatters boss John Still hasn’t ruled out adding to his squad, but he is keen to give every player an adequate chance to prove their worth, writes Mark Wood.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 6th March 2013, 3:47 pm
Hatters boss John Still
Hatters boss John Still

Town put in an uninspiring performance as they were held to a goalless draw at struggling Nuneaton Town on Tuesday night.

Neither side truly threatened to break the deadlock on the night, but that hasn’t convinced Still he needs to bring in any more additions, having already loaned in two players in striker Alex Wall from Maindenhead United and young Millwall defender Jake Goodman.

“I’m not rushing in to do anything at the moment, I’m not saying I won’t but I’m not really particularly planning to. I want to see what the lads have got here,” he said.

But Still remains certain Luton can perform better than they did against Boro.

He continued: “To be fair I’m not particularly critical at the moment because when you put something different into people, change how you want things done it can take a bit of time.

“We picked it up quite well on Saturday, we didn’t pick it up so well today. But I was quite prepared for that and I don’t really have any criticism about the players as long as they work as hard as they did I’m happy.

“Do I want them to play better? Yes I do 100 per cent. Have they got it in them to play better? Yes they have 100 per cent.

“But it’s like when any new manager goes to a football club. Normally it’s for a reason and maybe the expectation was a little bit better than it was, which isn’t a criticism of the other manager but that’s normally what happens.

“If we were playing like Read Madrid I wouldn’t be here because nothing would change. But they’re not playing like Read Madrid and that’s why I’m here.

“As I’ve said many, many times, I’m not a short-term fix. It’s going to take a long time.”

Man of the match Steve McNulty was pleased that Town have been able to tighten up at the back and believes their performances will only get better as they get used to Still’s style.

He said: “We’ve been conceding some sloppy goals from defensive errors so it’s always nice to get a couple of clean sheets. It shows we’re doing our job at the back and it just didn’t fall for us in front of goal tonight.

“The gaffer’s just come in and he’s only had a few training sessions with us so his style of play is going to fall into place sooner or later.

“Against Mansfield and against Braintree it was defensive errors, myself included in them, it’s never nice to make an error in front of goal so I won’t be going in there pointing fingers. We win together as a team and we lose together as a team. It’s just one of them nights where things didn’t fall for us in front of goal. We can go up for a corner and score, so it’s no good just pointing your fingers at the front men.

“I don’t think you can just put your finger on one thing. He’s come in and he’s changed the way he wants us to play and stuff like that, but I don’t think we applied ourselves properly going forward as a team. Not the front two or the midfield, but just as a team. They were sitting really deep and we just didn’t seem to make many chances in front of goal, but the more training sessions he gets with us the more he gets his input into us then the better we’re going to get.”

He was also full of praise for Town’s army of supporters that must have made up about half the 1,173-strong gate at Liberty Way on Tuesday.

McNulty said: “It’s a great supported club and they always travel well and I think they outnumbered home fans tonight, so it’s always nice for them to come and support us and they’ve been getting behind the lads which is good as well.”

Town now face Tuesday/Saturday games until the end of the season, but McNulty asserted that should be no issue at all.

“We’re full-time footballers and if you’re looking after yourself away from here that’s no problem,” he said. We’re paid to play football and that’s what we’ll do, obviously we’re training hard and getting plenty of rest throughout the day and that’s not going to be a problem for us, every other team’s got to do it. We can’t be using stuff like that as an excuse.”

But he is looking forward to getting back on home turf when Hereford United are the visitors to Kenilworth Road on Saturday.

McNulty added: “It’s always nice to play at home. Teams come and they seem to get intimidated, but we need to be winning our home games and picking points up on the road and seeing where that takes us at the end of the season.”