Nathan Jones and Luton Town backed for automatic promotion

Mike Holden by Mike Holden / 14 July 2017, 16:26

Mike Holden (@Ratings_Mike) previews Nathan Jones and Luton Town ahead of the upcoming 2017/18 League Two season.

Background

Luton were as well-drilled as any team in League Two last season but they lacked a little something at the top end of the pitch, which prevented them from mounting a serious challenge on the automatic promotion spots. It was a slightly underwhelming first full season in management for Nathan Jones, of whom big things are expected. However, the foundations are now in place for the Welshman to justify all of the acclaim that has been bestowed upon him by former colleagues at various previous clubs.

Personality

Jones is an architect, a strategist of the highest order. He is a man with a grand plan and any fresh information that comes to light during the course of a season is processed quickly by a highly intuitive mind, then either applied or discarded depending on its validity. His personality commands respect because players immediately know they can’t pull the wool over his eyes. However, the approach can also be mentally exhausting as players try to stay on the same wavelength.

Quote

"We’ve got some fantastic young players but we lacked a tiny bit of know-how that the three teams who went up had. I didn’t feel they were any better than us, we just lacked that little bit of experience. That’s down to what we had to do (last year) and how we had to overhaul the side. Now all my younger players are a year more experienced and we’ve added more experience as well. We’re very pleased with the business we’ve done."

Verdict

Something wasn’t quite right at Kenilworth Road last season. A lack of conviction prevented Luton from cracking the top three but their stranglehold on games was enough to believe they can improve this season. The loss of Cameron McGeehan is a blow but it has enabled Jones to strengthen in several areas, leaving him less reliant on the loan market. The body of work that has been done on the training ground so far might bear fruit spectacularly.

Prediction: automatic promotion

Nathan Jones

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