Rendell back while Hatters are hopeful over Lawless

Alex Lawless
Alex Lawless

Hatters are confident that both Alex Lawless and Scott Rendell will be available to face Forest Green Rovers at the weekend, writes Mike Simmonds.

Rendell missed the 2-0 FA Cup victory at his former club Cambridge United last weekend, while Lawless was stretchered off after a heavy challenge from Ricky Wellard in the first half.

Speaking to the press this afternoon though, assistant boss Alan Neilson said: “Scott wasn’t fit last week, but he’s had a full weeks training under him, so he’s back in the squad.

“Alex has recovered well and is progressing. He’s a real quick healer and I think it was just a little knock in his foot in the end.

“He’s doing some very light training, so we’ll give him every opportunity to make himself available for selection.”

Defenders Simon Ainge and Connor Essam come back into consideration after they were both cup-tied for the win over Cambridge, giving Town’s management staff food for thought after an impressive defensive display.

Neilson continued: “Everybody is in good form. The lads are buzzing in training and it’s up to the manager and the staff to pick the right side.

“We’ve got a lot of options now. The players want to play, and it’s better having more options than them being in the treatment room.

“There are players who can come in and do a job. Janos (Kovacs) went in and did well, (Lathaniel) Rowe-Turner came in and was superb and then moved to left back with Dean Beckwith came on too.”

Recent signing Arnaud Mendy made his debut against the U’s, turning in a performace of huge promise and Neilson believes he has has settled into the squad well.

He said: “He’s a player who played against us, we looked at him and the coaches did some investigation about him,

“All the reports came back that he was a good player and he showed on Saturday when he had an excellent debut.

“He brings height, strength and can get involved. He can get the ball and play as well, he’s not just a big stopper or destroyer.

“He’s fitted into the squad really well. He’s got a good touch, you can give the ball to him he can play.

“He’s been absolutely superb, he’s mixed with the lads straight away and is staying in the same hotel as Simon Ainge so he’s not by himself.”

The on-loan midfielder cramped up slightly at the Abbey Stadium last weekend, but Neilson revealed he has been doing extra to get himself fully up to speed.

He added: “On his debut he wants to run all over the place, but you saw his ability. He tired a bit but it was his first game and was probably a bit hyped up.

“He did a little bit extra on Monday and we’re really, really pleased with him.”

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