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Luton chief thought his side lacked 'sharpness' during City draw

Luton chief thought his side lacked ‘sharpness’ during City draw

Elijah Adebayo is well marshalled during this afternoon's draw with Birmingham City
Elijah Adebayo is well marshalled during this afternoon’s draw with Birmingham City

Town boss Nathan Jones felt his side were just lacking a little bit of ‘sharpness’ during their opening day goalless draw against Birmingham City this afternoon.

The Hatters went closest to scoring in the first half when Luke Freeman, who impressed on his debut, forced experienced keeper John Ruddy into a low save after tricking his way into a shooting position.

The former Norwich and Wolves stopper was to frustrate Luton’s attacks throughout the contest, coming off his line commandingly and slowing down play when possible as well, with referee Graham Scott not intervening.

Carlton Morris was denied by a last-ditch block, before Town upped the ante in the second period, Freeman curling wide, as did Morris after a good burst on the left, while Ruddy collected sub Cauley Woodrow’s snapshot.

He looked to have been beaten by fellow replacement Harry Cornick late on, only for the forward to curl inches past the post, as speaking afterwards, Jones, who saw the Blues win 5-0 and 3-0 in both matches last term, said: “We always want to win a game, especially at home, but it was a hard-fought game.

“I thought we had the better of the chances, had some real good chances to have at least scored a goal, but I couldn’t have asked more from them.

“They tried right until the end, we’re lacking a little bit of sharpness, which is understandable, as we had two weeks less than everyone (due to the play-offs).

“We had to come back, we’ve had a five week pre-season, so a little bit of sharpness was lacking really.

“We’ve had a real disjointed pre-season, that can sometimes catch up with you, but they gave me everything.

“I thought we created enough to have won the game, we must have had 12-15 set-plays, and just couldn’t find the opening.

“If we find the opening, it would have been a different game, but in terms of endeavour, in terms of everything else, I can’t ask anything more than them.

“We’re bedding in a few new players who I thought were really effective,

“Luke Freeman started the game really well, and we thought we’d only play him 60 as he’s missed a bit of the pre-season, but I’m really happy with the levels and how we went about our work.

“Ironically, we didn’t take a point off these last year, so at least if we take the same points we did off everyone else, we’ll actually be in a better position.”

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