4 observations as Luton Town conclude 2022 in style at QPR
Luton Town ended their Loftus Road hoodoo yesterday evening, with Rob Edwards’ side running out as 3-0 winners against QPR.
Carlton Morris’ brace, and a wonderful strike from the impressive Alfie Doughty, secured the points for the Bedfordshire outfit, in what has been an excellent festive period for the new Town boss.
It was a result that temporarily pushed the Hatters into the play-off positions but with the rest of the fixtures playing out after the clash in West London, Luton sit seventh and are denied a spot in the play-offs because of goal difference.
Here, are four observations made during yesterday’s emphatic victory at QPR…
Continued defensive solidarity despite yet another setback
Luton have been hit with setback after setback within their defensive line this season, however, they have managed to thrive as a backline amidst this adversity.
Yesterday was another example of that, with James Bree coming into the back three after Gabe Osho’s red card against Norwich City forced the Hatters into a reshuffle.
Late on during last night’s win in West London, Dan Potts was forced off, meaning that another wing-back in Amari’i Bell was tasked with displaying his versatility.
With both players slotting into the backline seamlessly and keeping another clean sheet, it speaks volumes of the adaptability and defensive discipline that is within the squad.
Alfie Doughty can do it all
When talking about versatility, then Alfie Doughty is a name that deserves a high level of praise.
Initially tasked with doing a job on the ever-lively Ilias Chair whilst being deployed as a right-wing-back, he also provided a real threat when pushing forward.
Capping off his night with an absolute beauty of a strike into the top corner, it was a fantastic display from a player who is rapidly growing in importance.
What a signing Doughty is proving to be and you cannot help but feel that there is so much more to come from him.
Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu
Earlier on in the campaign, Luton struggled in the midfield at times when Henri Lansbury was absent.
However, these concerns have been eliminated by the return of Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu.
His physicality and ability to read the game makes him a completely different option to Luton’s current midfielders and allows Allan Campbell to play his pressing game, whilst also allowing Jordan Clark to slot in deeper.
Excellent against Norwich on Boxing Day and even better against the R’s, he will be hoping that he can bring this late 2022 form into the new year.
Positioned very well for 2023
Outside the play-off places because of goal difference, Luton have positioned themselves very well for what remains of this season.
The Championship has proven to be as competitive as ever during its early stages, and despite some early difficulties on home soil, Edwards’ side will be confident and excited about what remains of this campaign.
There is a lot of football and we all know how quickly the narrative changes in the second tier, but ultimately, these last two fixtures have helped to create an extremely positive feeling around Kenilworth Road.
Featured image: Copyright of Gareth Owen/LTFC