Player ratings: Exeter City 1-0 Luton Town
Luton Town have often been the team to dish out a giant-killing. Wolves (H). Norwich (A) Both games stick in the memory bank as great occasions. On the flip side, the Hatters have been the ‘giant’ being ‘killed’ as progression up the pyramid has been made, Newport (H). Grimsby (A). Stevenage (A)…
Exeter last night was the latest example to add to the bank of midweek night away games, where the team have not met the requirements on the evening. Walking up to St. James Park last night, one hour before the game and it was all drums and noise. Upon walking through the turnstile, the opposite bank, the ‘Big Bank’ was rocking, and there wasn’t a spare seat. A whole hour before kick-off. You could see immediately they had turned up and were ready for the occasion.
The lineup put out last night on paper should’ve been more than enough to dispatch Exeter last night, and not necessarily cruise through them, but put in a good performance to take the win and move onto the next round. What played out was quite simply the opposite.
Here, are player ratings from Tuesday evening's cup exit at Exeter
TIM KRUL - 5
Nothing special in his performance, purely because he had nothing to do all night other than act as a sweeper in possession plays which often led to nothing. No glaring issues from his performance though which is the positive to take.
ALFIE DOUGHTY - 6
Quite honestly, only him and Andersen can coat themselves in any form of glory from last night. All attacking efforts that were productive came from this side, him and Chong linked up well and he looked visibly annoyed to be subbed off - albeit he will be needed for Saturday, so it’s a somewhat justified change.
TEDAN MENGI - 5
Happy to see him start, but you can see he still has a long way to go. Got a silly yellow card in the first half, and from there, his confidence slid down and wasn’t getting as stuck in.
MADS ANDERSEN - 6
Won most, if not all of his personal duels last night. Solid in tackles, and looked the most composed out of the 3 centre halves. However, composing that back 3 last night was a tall feat. He is evidently adapting to the way Edwards wants his team to play & set up.
JOE JOHNSON - 5
It was a huge call to put Joe Johnson in the team last night, but he is arguably the best youth prospect the Hatters have at present have and he will only benefit from minutes in the first-team. He had an okay first half, but he struggled to replicate that in the second half and his confidence was dropping each time as the game progressed.
RYAN GILES - 4
Speaking of complacency, or lack of drive - minus a couple of chances once we’d conceded or for a corner, there wasn’t one clear cut opportunity from his crosses. No drive to get up the pitch even at 0-0 and Mitchell had him on toast all evening.
He endured a difficult evening from a defensive standpoint up against Deme Mitchell, the eventual match-winner for the Grecians. As for his attacking output, it left much to be desired.
PELLY RUDDOCK MPANZU - 4
This man thrives in a midfield 3, not a 2. He needs the freedom, and last night he was restricted, and both him and Bez looked scared to move forward with the ball. The urgency only came from him once the goal went in.
LUKE BERRY - 4
This one feels horrible, but he was played well out of position last night. Almost looked like he was expected to play that Nakamba role of sitting deep and cleaning up, which he is fine at, but his best assets come from final third runs and playing in attacking midfield to set up over players. Genuinely believe he’d have been a better use of LW / through the middle instead of Woodrow.
CAULEY WOODROW - 3
The harshest one, but you couldn’t identify what it was he was trying to do, or where he was meant to be playing. One minute, he’s down the middle, the next he is on the left wing and another time, he is dropping into CDM territory.
ELIJAH ADEBAYO - 4
Again, similar to Cauley, it was difficult to identify his role going forward, with the inter-changing between the two confusing the visitors instead of the opposition, but at least when Eli had the ball, the effort to take players on was there.
TAHITH CHONG - 5
First 10-15, he had a quick start and should of had 1 or 2 goals from the big chances. However, as what comes with a ‘talented’ player, they can do ‘too much’ sometimes. On the flip side, you wanted him to show for the ball in moments, and drive us up the pitch, and in those moments, he was unable to provide.
ISSA KABORE - 3
All I will say here is quite simply, ‘if in doubt, get it out’.
AMAR’I BELL - 5
Added some composure to the backline when coming on, however, he can still become much more dominant defensively and more aware in the defensive transitiion.
JACOB BROWN - 4
These ratings for the subs will seem harsh, but only because they sadly didn’t have an impact on the result. However, the theme will stick for Browny, Chieo and Morris in that, the second they came on, they added much needed urgency and it is clear to see why they are the ones currently starting.
CHIEDOZIE OGBENE - 4
Again, as expected, he was livelier, but just couldn’t make anything stick.
CARLTON MORRIS - 4
He ran on from the sub and immediately was putting himself about, winning corners, bringing others into play and this is the sort of thing which makes him the better choice over Eli in bigger games.