Luton v Hartlepool

Kenneth E End

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,148
Likes
487
Supports
Luton Town
Thread starter #1
Very comfortable home victory for a rejuvenated Luton, keeping realistic play off aims alive.

Hartlepool were utter garbage for the first 20 minutes - probably the worst performance I've seen from a side during that spell. They did nothing apart from stroll around and let Luton play some good passing football. If I was a Pools fan, I would've been pulling my hair out having travelled 5 hours! Did they stay overnight? It looked like they were under the effects of the coach journey - the infamous Richard Money "lactate" (Gateshead away c2010) possibly coming into play.

We're still very much in this, but I can't help thinking we're going to need a result against Southend next week away from home, who haven't conceded a goal in 11 home games!
 

Judge Dredd

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,575
Likes
395
Supports
Luton Town
#2
Hartlepool's defence was genuinely embarrassing. They were consistently beaten in the air by midget Cullen, and consistently done for pace by Cullen, Lee and Howells, all of whom are pretty one-paced. We must have gotten in behind the defence more in the first 20 minutes today than we have for the rest of the season combined. Really we should have won by at least 6 goals, so many clear cut, easy chances missed - if we miss out on the play-offs by a couple of goals GD I will be annoyed!

The late Stevenage goal was a bit of a kick in the teeth, somehow it would still have been in our own hands had that not gone in. Oh well. We still only need a point at Southend to take it to the last game of the season. Realistically, Plymouth and Stevenage will both almost certainly win their next fixtures. That will make Stevenage uncatchable, but if we get a draw at Southend we'd still be in with a shout at overhauling Plymouth on the last day (they are away at Shrewsbury and we we are at home to Stevenage who will be safe in the play offs already (unless they loe or draw next Sat in which case we might be able to overhaul them anyway)).

Still a long shot, especially considering we can't put together back to back results to save our lives since November ish. Still, there is hope and at least the last couple might not be boring dead rubbers. Could do with Southend getting stuffed in mid-week so they aren't still in the automatic race, maybe they'll roll over for us...
 
Messages
2,190
Likes
476
Location
Bournemouth
Supports
Luton Town
#3
Thought we played well first half although as you say Hartlepool where very poor, defensively they were dreadful, they very nearly let Lee just walk around them all to score at one point. I think Cullen and Lee would be very disappointed to not have been on the scoresheet, both had a few chances that they'll be disappointed with.

I'm harsh on them both and don't rate either but give credit where it's due Whalley and Howells where great today, not sure if that's to do with them or how poor their fullbacks played.

Was a bit worrying that even against a poor side like Hartlepool McNulty was still having a few dodgy moments, nothing major fortunately bust still apparent. His form has just fallen of a cliff and the tactic of turning him and playing balls in behind him is so painfully obviou and has grown as the season has worn on. I really think he needs replacing in be summer as a priority.

Also, Ryan Halls shot that cleared the Kenny was right up there with Ryan Donaldsons dreadful free kick as worst attempts on goal I've ever seen! Amazing.

I'm still pretty certain that playoffs are not on for us, I just don't have any faith that we can pick anything up against Southend.
 

Judge Dredd

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,575
Likes
395
Supports
Luton Town
#4
I think Cullen and Lee would be very disappointed to not have been on the scoresheet, both had a few chances that they'll be disappointed with.
Yep, both of them were making some terrible decisions once they got into the area. Lee should have gone direct for goal in the first half when he pulled back for Jake (I think he was aiming for Jake anyway until Cullen got a touch on it which took it away from both). Then in the second he should have squared it across for a tap in for one of two players in the centre but tried to turn the defender and lost it. Then Cullen tried to square it after Whalley's through ball when he had the whole goal to aim at and ridiculous amounts of time in the second half.

Oh, and Cullen should have buried it when he went clear in the first and tried to round the keeper but telegraphed it horribly and was dispossessed.

On another day, we'd have scored from all of those clear cut chances, and the one that was cleared off the line from Whalley (I think). Goal difference could/should look a lot more favourable this eve all things considered.

Oh well, it was nice to actually create some clear cut chances on goal for once, easily the most we have had this season by a mile. Even if it was in large part down to the opposition's defensive frailties, it was nice to be a little excited at our attacking play again.


Also, agreed that Whalley had a very good game. Hopefully not good enough to make anyone think he deserves a new contract though - he'll be anonymous for the next two games now as always. We still desperately need to recruit for those wide areas whatever happens in the next couple of games. Whalley is not consistent enough by a long shot and Hall has done absolutely nothing whatsoever since signing.
 

Kenneth E End

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,148
Likes
487
Supports
Luton Town
Thread starter #5
I'm still glad that we're in this position with 2 weekends to go. In any other division, the players would be booking their trips to Magaluf right about now.

Jake Howells, on his 24th birthday, was excellent with 2 assists and a goal. (315 appearances and 31 goals by his 24th birthday!) Shout out too for Scott Griffiths, playing with a hernia and scoring his 2nd of the season from left back.
 
Messages
2,190
Likes
476
Location
Bournemouth
Supports
Luton Town
#6
Definitely agree about wide players, been an issue all year and to be honest I don't rate anyone who we have here at the moment to play those positions. Not sure that Hall is the right answer to that question either.

Whatever happens with playoffs etc I'm really interested in how we approach recruitment in the summer.
 

Soup Ladle

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,262
Likes
1,195
Supports
Hartlepool
#7
We were missing Mirfin which was a big blow for our defence. We went to 442 which doesn't work for us.

Not sure the players believed they could get anything yesterday and we were always going to lose this one to be honest.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
14,935
Messages
923,466
Members
5,090
Latest member
Bordon Shot