Meet the opposition | Luton Town

18th December 2019
First team
Luton Town

As Swansea City prepare to face Luton Town on Saturday, here we take a closer look at the Hatters.


What’s their story?

Luton are enjoying their first season back in the Championship for 12 years.

The Hatters lifted the League One title last season and went the whole season unbeaten at home.

Their most successful period began in 1981–82, when the club won the old Second Division and gained promotion to the First.

Luton beat Arsenal 3–2 in the 1988 Football League Cup final and remained in the First Division until relegation at the end of the 1991–92 season.

Between 2007 and 2009, their financial difficulties caused the club to drop from the second tier to the fifth in successive seasons.

The last of these relegations came during the 2008–09 season, when 30 points were docked from Luton's tally for various financial irregularities.

Luton spent five seasons in non-League football before winning the Conference Premier in 2013–14, securing promotion back into the Football League.

Then came successive promotions – firstly finishing second in League Two before winning the third tier last season.

Luton Town

How’s their form?

Nine defeats in their last 12 games leaves the Hatters sitting just two points above the dropzone. A 3-0 loss at Stoke, who sit third bottom, and a late defeat at Preston make up their most recent results.

Four wins and two draws – the same return as ninth-placed Nottingham Forest - from their ten league games at Kenilworth Road show they are a difficult opponent on home turf. Their 3-0 victory over Bristol City in October is their stand out result of the campaign, and is an indication of how difficult it can be for visiting teams.

Graeme Jones
Former Swans assistant Graeme Jones is in charge of the Hatters.

Who’s the boss?

A familiar face to Swans fans, Graeme Jones took up his first job in management when he became Luton’s manager in the summer.

Following Nathan Jones’ departure to Stoke, Jones was appointed manager in May after caretaker-boss Mick Harford led the club to the League One title.

Jones spent two years at the Liberty Stadium as assistant manager to Roberto Martinez, with the Swans winning the League One title.

He then followed Martinez to Wigan, Everton and Belgium before heading to West Brom to work under Darren Moore.

His playing career saw him represent Doncaster Rovers, Wigan, St Johnstone, Southend United, Boston United, Bury, Clyde and Hamilton.

James Collins
Luton Town top-scorer James Collins.

Who are the key men?

Striker James Collins has been Luton’s main man again this season, with a return of seven goals from 22 games.

He adapted to life in the Championship very well, scoring five in his opening nine appearances.

The Republic of Ireland international scored 25 times last season as the Hatters lifted the League One title.

Strike partner Harry Cornick has also chipped in with five goals. The former Bournemouth trainee has linked well with Collins this term, and they will be crucial to the Hatters’ hopes of survival.

There is plenty of experience in the squad via Callum McManaman, Kazenga LuaLua and ex-Barnsley and Coventry defender Martin Cranie.