Luton Town start of season loan watch - How have the 7 Hatters got on?
As we are halfway through the season and have stopped for the World Cup break, it's a perfect opportunity to take a look away from the first team and get an update on how our players out on loan are performing. With seven players to talk about, let's get right into it...
Elliot Thorpe - Burton Albion
The former Tottenham academy player joined the Hatters as a free agent just over a year ago and has the potential to be an important player for the future. The twenty-two-year-old can operate as a holding midfielder, a position that the Hatters have appeared to lack over the last season or two. After making three appearances on the bounce in August, many thought Thorpe would be eased into the starting eleven, but instead, he joined Burton on loan at the end of the transfer window. Since then he has only played in five matches, starting in just one of those and has no goals or assists yet. Some have blamed the management at Burton but it appears Thorpe is struggling to force his way into a struggling Brewers side right now.
Loan Rating- 2/10
Hasn't worked out for either party as Burton are struggling and Luton haven't seen progression in one of their biggest prospects.
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Not likely, another loan needed or improvement before return.
John McAtee - Grimsby Town
Upon his arrival at Kenilworth Road in the summer, McAtee was immediately sent back on loan to his former club Grimsby Town as he was not match-fit. After suffering a string of injuries, the attacking midfielder only just returned to playing again last week but is certainly a player for the future. After being out for four months, McAtee made his first appearance for Grimsby this season against Doncaster Rovers last Saturday. Although he scored, Grimsby lost the game.
Loan Rating- 7/10
Works for both parties and hopefully McAtee can stay fit for the rest of the season
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Highly unlikely, after being unfit for so long and only playing in League Two McAtee will need time to gain stability and needs another loan at a higher level before making his first appearance in a Hatters shirt.
Aribim Pepple - Grimsby Town
Also on loan at Grimsby, Pepple's situation is almost identical to McAtee's. After being signed in the summer he went straight to Grimsby on loan. Pepple's season has been just as frustrating as his Grimsby counterpart McAtee, as he has only started one match, with an injury playing a part in that in more recent weeks. Pepple has made nine appearances and recorded two assists but as a striker he is yet to register a goal.
Loan Rating- 5/10
It was always going to take Pepple time to adapt after he moved from Canada, but hopefully, he can kickstart his season soon.
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Won't return to the side, Pepple is only 19 and needs time to learn his trade in the EFL, even if he had a brilliant second half to the season with a great return of goals and assists, it would be a huge risk to put him into our Championship side. Another season or two out on loan will do him some good.
Admiral Muskwe - Fleetwood Town
After an underwhelming season for the Hatters in the Championship last season, Muskwe was sent out on loan to League One side Fleetwood Town. Since making the switch, the forward has made just seven appearances for the Cod Army but started in six. In those matches, he has returned just one goal.
Loan Rating- 3/10
An unfortunate situation as Muskwe was expected to make a big impact in League One and come back to challenge for a place in the squad. Although Muskwe never had a brilliant return for the Hatters he always worked hard and sometimes performed well, so a drop in division was expected to be perfect but that hasn't been the situation.
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Highly unlikely, unless he has an outstanding second half to the season it seems almost certain there will be no place for him in the Luton side with all the attacking strengths we possess. It will be a case of another loan or selling the Zimbabwean international.
Carlos Mendes Gomes- Fleetwood Town
Starting the season with the Hatters, Carlos Mendes Gomes picked up a minor injury, lost consistency and his place in the side and ended up on loan at Fleetwood Town. But this season he has become Luton's most successful player out on loan for sure. The exciting winger has racked up four league goals and two assists for Fleetwood in just thirteen appearances, as well as that he has a goal and an assist in the EFL trophy. He even scored a bicycle kick against Oxford United to ensure three points for the Cod Army. One of his most recent performances earned him a man of the match award as he got two assists and a goal against Accrington Stanley.
Loan Rating- 9/10
Mendes Gomes is starting regularly and scoring goals, you can't ask much more from a loan deal.
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Likely, CMG went away with an opportunity to show he deserves a place in the Luton side and has shown he is capable of performing consistently if any of the Hatters players out on loan has a chance to squeeze their way into the team, it's him.
Dion Pereira- Bradford City
After impressing on loan at Bradford City last season, the Bantams were desperate to take Pereira again for another season. During the summer it seemed unlikely as Pereira was part of Jones' plans, the twenty-three-year-old even played many games in pre-season. However, right at the end of the window, Bradford got their man, but since his return, he hasn't offered the same spark he gave them the first time around. After eleven league appearances, Dion has only recorded one goal and one assist but his recent performances have started to pick up and he has shown glimpses of the abilities that he displayed in his first spell.
Loan Rating- 5/10
Bradford fans love Pereira and he is getting valuable game time which is brilliant but his performances need to be more consistent.
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Highly unlikely, it is almost certain that Pereira will end up going out on loan again as Luton know he has the ability but is just not ready yet.
Josh Neufville - Sutton United
Versatile youngster Josh Neufville has proven to be a great prospect in the last few years after completing a successful loan spell at Yeovil Town. The twenty-two-year-old is currently playing at Sutton United in league two. The winger was even recalled just a day before Luton's playoff semi-final against Huddersfield last season, however, he didn't end up playing. This season he has gained some valuable experience with Sutton whilst taking a step up in divisions. He has currently made eighteen appearances in the league, sixteen of them being starts. He only has two goals this season but that isn't so much of a worry as he has adopted a right midfield role. After previously playing right back and striker in his short career it appears he has found his strongest position.
Loan Rating- 6/10
The loan deal ensures Neufville is getting regular game time and comes to terms with a higher level of football.
Likeliness to get into the side upon return- Won't return to the side, Neufville is definitely talented and a great footballer, he will certainly play in the Championship, but not just yet. Just like Pepple, he needs another season on loan to be playing consistently.