A disclaimer before we begin, this article is an opinion from a fan, I am certain that Rob Edwards and the recruitment team are fully aware of what they need to do. The following opinions are those that are shared by an overwhelming number of supporters.
As of January 30th, we have 20 registered players, which excludes development talent like; Louis Watson, Casey Pettit and Zack Nelson, all three of whom are midfielders.
As of writing this leaves us with 2 Goalkeepers; Ethan Horvath and Harry Isted (who will be replaced by Jack Walton from Barnsley).
5 defenders; Potts, Lockyer, Burke, Osho and Bradley (with Bradley having an injury that was a few weeks out, a few months ago).
10 midfielders, which includes the wing back positions; Doughty, Bell, Pelly, Lansbury, Clark, Berry, Drameh, Onyedinma, Campbell and Freeman (with Freeman recently having a groin operation and therefore a long term absence and Lansbury also not back on the grass yet).
4 strikers; Woodrow, Morris, Adebayo and Cornick (with Cornick heavily linked to joining Bristol City).
What is going on with our Goalkeepers?
1 keeper already out on loan, Isted reportedly also on his way too and bringing another one in permanently? But wait this keeper we are bringing in is a back up from League One? Is Horvath going to stay on beyond this season? Is Shea going to be registered again? I think the Goalkeeper union at Luton Town needs its own opinion piece!
We need defenders
Playing a back 3, and having 5 senior defenders, one of which is a long term injury doubt, doesn't sit right with a lot of supporters. Considering now that we are about to embark on 8 games between now and 28th February, with midweek games in 5 of our next 6 gameweeks. Take into account that Reece Burke, as good as he is, is being managed to prevent reoccurrence of his injury issues. This leaves us incredibly strapped going into this hectic second half of the season with a playoff chase on the line. In addition to the lack of defensive options, we have now lost James Bree who was filling in a lot at the right centre back position. We also have Amari'i Bell who can slot in at left centre back. But again, it's a case of square pegs and round holes, because as pointed out by Andy Burgess on Put it in the Mixer, a full back slotting in at centre back doesn't have the same instincts as a centre back when it comes to defending. My preference would be at minimum, 1 specialist centre back, preferably left footed. Currently we are linked and have bid for Exeter utility man Josh Key, who is able to play centre back, but can also be an option for right wing back and midfield.
As it stands, we are well covered in midfield, even with long term injuries having plagued Henri Lansbury and a recent operation for Luke Freeman. We have development options that can step up, and all fans are excited about the emergence of Louie Watson in the absence of Lansbury. On the wings we have many options with Doughty able to cover both flanks, as well as Fred Onyedinma who returned to first team action against Grimsby, as well as Bell covering the left wing in recent games and the addition of Codey Drameh who should be a mainstay on the right flank now for the rest of the season.
We are losing depth up front
At Luton we boast one of the most coveted forward lines in the Championship. We have the power and link up play from Elijah Adebayo and all round brilliance of Carlton Morris as our first choice strikers. The guile and shooting ability of Cauley Woodrow and the pace in behind of Harry Cornick, however, Cornick is strongly linked to Bristol City and we have lost the experience of Cameron Jerome to Bolton Wanderers after we agreed to mutually terminate his contract. Should Harry Cornick move onto Ashton Gate, it will leave us with 3 forwards, and as seen last season towards the business end of the season. You need to be able to rotate your forward line. Ultimately this is what may have cost us against Huddersfield in the playoff semi final over both legs.
We most likely need 1 forward in who is able to participate in first team rotation, as it's unlikely that we will be promoting a development player, as it stands none of our development strikers have made the bench in the FA Cup, Carabao Cup or League this season. Some might think Ed McJannet could make the step up, but he has recently been linked to Sassuolo in Serie A.