4 observations made as Luton Town fall to defeat at Brighton in Premier League opener
Over 3000 Hatters made the trip to the south coast for the club's first-ever Premier League fixture at Brighton & Hove Albion's Amex Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Eventually falling to a 4-1 defeat against an exciting and fantastically well-drilled Brighton side, the occasion represented a celebration of exactly how we have come in recent seasons, whilst there were certainly positives to take.
Here, we run through four observations made during the loss at the Amex Stadium...
Effective on the counter-attack
It is no secret that the Hatters had to endure lots of Brighton possession and were penned in deep positions for a large part of the 90 minutes, however, and particularly in the first half, there were bright moments on the counter-attack.
Issa Kabore and Ryan Giles caused some difficulties for the Seagulls defence from crossing positions and you get the feeling that the wing-back position becomes even more of an important area for Luton this season.
The Hatters will cause mayhem for teams this season if they are able to break quickly and work positions for Kabore or Giles to threaten.
Mistakes will be punished
It is a feeling that we have experienced before but there always tends to be a noticeable shift in how relentless an attack are when we have won past promotions, and Saturday proved no different.
Not only did the Seagulls move through the thirds with precision, intelligence and dynamism, they pounced on any mistake made.
The prime example of where this proved true was for Brighton's third goal, where sloppy play gave the hosts the ball in a dangerous position, whilst Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu's sloppy pass was instantly capitalised upon.
Jacob Brown and Chiedozie Ogbene impress
The muscle and might of Carlton Morris and Elijah Adebayo will certainly work at times this season but it is key to have attacking variation, and that is what the Hatters seemingly have in Jacob Brown and Chiedozie Ogbene.
Brown, like the starting two, brings athleticism and power to the frontline, but he is also rapid-paced and has a relentlessness about him in the way he applies pressure.
As for Ogbene, he has very quick acceleration and showed on Saturday that he can carry the ball forward with confidence and purpose.
There was a different dynamic when the two new additions came on and the pair gave what was a resilient Brighton defence, something completely different to think about.
Extra defensive mobility needed
Losing both Reece Burke and Gabe Osho to injury during pre-season, Luton currently lack mobility in the right-sided centre-back position.
With Mads Andersen tasked with filling that position on Saturday, there were a couple of occasions where this was exploited and this is an area of the pitch that could be addressed before the summer window slams shut.
It is of course important to consider this was Andersen's first-ever Premier League game and he was by no means poor on the day but this is more of an observation that his combative and dominating qualities make him more suited to occupying the central position in a defensive three.