July 18, 2024

Luton Town: 4 Hatters could shock the Premier League next season

Luton pose new challenges to the current crop of Premier League players, but which of Luton’s current squad will shock next season’s opposition?

Luton Town achieved the unthinkable by becoming the first side to earn promotion from the National League to the Premier League in a matter of just nine years. A truly remarkable tale of fighting back from the depths of economic despair to reaching the holy grail of football domestically, their promotion ensures the foreseeable future of the football club.

As Kenilworth Road is readied for Premier League action and £10 million is spent on improvements to the current structures that encase that tight, enclosed pitch, the current squad under manager, Rob Edwards prepare for a season in the top flight, the club’s first in more than 30 years. It’s fair to say, the Hatters will be bringing a different spin on the beautiful game to the Premier League, utilising their strengths of physicality, gamesmanship, and being notoriously tough to break down. The side will pose new challenges to the current crop of Premier League players, but which of Luton’s current squad will have the ability to shock the opposition?

Seemingly gone are the days of the big, burly, lumbering centre-forward in the top flight. Standing at 6’1, the target man is symbolic of a bygone era. Carlton Morris is somewhat of a throwback, and is essentially, a modern-day continuation of the aerially dominant handfuls of yesteryear. Brought in from Barnsley for an undisclosed fee, he was another sign of shrewd business from a recruitment team that have excelled themselves in recent seasons.

Luton striker Carlton Morris signs contract extension | The Independent

 

The centre-forward could well startle Premier League defenders who are more accustomed to dominating their opposite man both in the air and physically. Morris combines elite gamesmanship with brawn, aggression, and potency in front of goal, having bagged 20 goals last term.

Naturally, after worryingly collapsing during Luton’s play-off final win against Coventry City, Tom Lockyer’s future was left in doubt. After recovering from heart surgery, the defender has thankfully been given the green light to resume his career in professional football, and with that comes a debut season in the Premier League. The centre-back was monumental in delivering another promotion-winning campaign at Kenilworth Road with Luton conceding the second-fewest goals in the league, and his efforts didn’t go unnoticed, winning Luton’s Player of the Season, as well as being named in the EFL’s Championship Team of the Season. He may lack a proven record in the Premier League but has international experience with Wales and that may help him acclimatise to the top flight a lot easier than some might expect.

 

Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu sets Luton on way to victory over Stoke - The Irish  News

Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu is an anomaly in English football. Ruddock is the embodiment of Luton Town, what the club stands for, and its colossal rise from the National League to the Premier League. Having started out in the Hatters’ youth system, Mpanzu is the only player remaining from the days of York City, Braintree Town, and AFC Telford, and has been with the Bedfordshire-based side throughout their historic four promotions. He is the only player in the 23-24 Premier League that has played at every level of EFL and national league, and to have been promoted from each division. While some may see non-league football on his CV as a sick to beat him with, Ruddock’s ability to continuously improve suggests a drive and determination that will push him to make the most of his chance in the Premier League. He was also once on the books at West Ham as a youngster, so clearly there’s an element of natural pedigree too.

 

Luton striker Carlton Morris signs contract extension | The Independent

Doughty was a standout player for Luton last season. Making the left flank his home, the Luton faithful certainly didn’t tire seeing him whip quality ball after quality ball into opponents’ boxes, recording seven assists across all competitions. Despite initial struggles against the flair of Jack Clarke in the playoff semi-final, the left-wing-back quickly adjusted to demands in emphatic fashion, as he had done for almost the entire season. The player’s delivery will be something that will strike fear into even the most competent of Premiership backlines and it’s no secret that flying full-backs/wing-backs are an exceptionally common theme in the Premier League these days. There have been calls for Rico Henry to be in the England conversation after impressing at Brentford and Doughty could be a similar kettle of fish.

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