Teams can’t live with Town’s ‘tempo’ as Red Dragons are slayed
Goals of the highest quality were once again on display as Town’s ‘tempo’ proved just too much for demoralised Wrexham at Kenilworth Road on Tuesday night, writes Mark Wood.
The managerless Red Dragons were put to the sword by rampant Hatters 5-0 on the night as Luton made it 17 goals without reply in just three games.
Boss John Still enthused: “I think we hit spells in games where our tempo is too much for the other team. On Saturday it was in the second half, at Alfreton it was in the first half. Against Kidderminster in the second half, against Hereford, I think that was in the second half, but it just comes in the game.
“The tempo is quick and our attacking four if you like, are a handful and the two boys in midfield are 20 and 18, and they’re still learning the game, but their energy levels in the end just wears teams down.”
Today (Wednesday) marked a year in the job for the Town chief and his formula for success has been based on the training ground.
He said: “It’s been very good, the hard work on the training ground from the first day I came in, training changed completely to perhaps what they’d been used to.
“Touch pass, pass, move, touch pass, pass, move, tempo. And we’ve worked really hard to get it and it’s been great for us.”
Creative midfielder Luke Guttridge stole the show with a brace on the night and drew praise from his boss.
Still said: “Fantastic, he is a top quality player. I was so pleased to get him. I hounded him a little bit if I’m honest.
“He’s been brilliant for us, but that’s taking away from other people because I look at the team now and everyone looks comfortable.
“At the start of the season one or two people didn’t start great, Scott (Griffiths) didn’t start great, Andre (Gray) didn’t start great, I didn’t think Ronnie (Henry) started great, even (Jake) Howellsy didn’t start great - and I think Howellsy’s been brilliant by the way - but for some of these people we changed so many things and they’re learning so many different things and it takes time.
“Start of the season people were saying we’re not scoring any goals, and I was saying don’t worry we will score goals, we’re no conceding at the moment.
“Let’s get the team right, let’s get the pattern right, let’s get the work-rate right and if we can do that things will fall into place and touch wood they’ve fallen into place, I’m really pleased.”
Strikers Andre Gray and Paul Benson were also on target on the night along with Jake Howells from the spot.
Benson’s was put on a plate for him by 30-year-old skipper Ronnie Henry who is still yet to score despite being in his second season with the club
“I’ll score don’t worry about that!” he said. “It’ll come, but to be honest with you as long as we win I don’t mind.
“I should have shot to be honest with you. The lads are getting into me a little bit, I should have probably scored, but my first touch set me up to cross it so I done that.
“It doesn’t bother me scoring, I’d love to score, but clean sheets are more important to me and that’s what we’ve got.”
Jake Howells has been impressed by Luton’s form and feels everyone in the squad is really pulling together.
He said: “It’s very impressive, we’ve just got to keep going, take each game as it comes, get three points at the end and hopefully get three points Saturday.
“I think the whole squad’s together, the people that didn’t play on the bench, or the people that weren’t involved at all, everyone knows if they get a chance they’ve got to do well.
“I think we are just really well and everyone’s doing what they have to do and we’re just winning games.”
Still is also pleased by Town’s frugality at the back and is determined to keep his team on track for promotion.
He added: “We’ve scored lots of goals, but defensively we haven’t been conceding as well. Honestly we’re doing OK, but it’s just a point of reminding people, winners have a way of doing things.
“It’s hard to become a winner and it’s easy to lose it and my job is to remind people of their responsibilities in their jobs and you know what, I’m absolutely delighted because as I said on Saturday, the stronger the team, the stronger the team, 7,500 people on a Tuesday night, part of our team. Fantastic.
“Everyone at the moment is working hard and doing their bit and sometimes if the team on the pitch ain’t quite at it, the team off the pitch will lift them up.
“And if the team off the pitch are a bit quiet sometimes the quality of the football will lift them up and it’s all part and parcel of the team effect.”