Meet the opposition | Luton Town

2nd March 2023
First team
Luton Town

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

What’s their story?

Luton Town are currently contesting their fourth successive season in the Championship.

They last appeared in the top-flight in the 1991-92 season, where they were relegated on the final day of the campaign – thus preventing them from featuring in the inaugural Premier League.

They’ve been at Kenilworth Road since 1905, having been founded 10 years earlier, while their biggest piece of silverware came via the League Cup in 1988.

Financial difficulties between 2007 and 2009 saw them fall from the second tier to the fifth in successive seasons. After five seasons in non-league, they were promoted in 2014, and successive promotions in League Two and League One soon followed.

How's their form?

Elijah Adebayo

Luton have been in a fine run of recent form and have lost just one of their last eight Championship games, winning four during that time.

That sequence has left them holding one of the play-off places they look to secure a top-six finish for the third season in a row.

Who’s the gaffer?

Rob Edwards

Rob Edwards. The former defender has been in charge of Luton since November, succeeding Nathan Jones when the Welshman made the switch to Southampton and doing a fine job.

The 40-year-old started his playing career with Aston Villa, and went on to have spells with Crystal Palace, Derby County, Wolves, Blackpool, Norwich, Barnsley, Fleetwood and Shrewsbury before moving into coaching at Molineux after being forced to hang up his boots by injury.

He had stints with Telford and with the England youth set-up before becoming Forest Green Rovers boss in the summer of 2021 and leading them to promotion to League One.

That attracted the attention of Watford, who moved for the ex-Wales international to lead their efforts for an instant return to the Premier League.

However, he was barely given any time at Vicarage Road, and Luton have been the beneficiaries.

Who’s the captain?

Close up of Luton Town captain Sonny Bradley

Imposing centre-back Sonny Bradley is the club captain at Kenilworth Road but is currently sidelined by a knee injury.

Standing at 6ft 5in, Hull born Bradley has over 150 appearances to his name for the Hatters since joining the club from Plymouth Argyle in the summer of 2018.  

Bradley previously had spells at Aldershot, Portsmouth and Crawley before joining Plymouth.

Who are the key men?

Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu

In the absence of Bradley, Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu has had the armband, and also filled in at centre-back recently.

The midfielder, who was on the books at West Ham, has been with Luton all the way through their remarkable climb back up through the league pyramid.

He has made over 350 appearances across a short loan spell and his subsequent permanent switch, and has been an assured performer at every different level.

Now aged 28, he is a player at his peak.

Striker Carlton Morris is the top scorer for Luton, having netted 13 goals and set up six more so far this term.

The Norwich academy product joined the Hatters following Barnsley’s relegation to League One at the end of last term and has been enjoying arguably the best campaign of his career to date.

At Carrow Road he had loan spells with Oxford, York, Hamilton, Rotherham, Shrewsbury and MK Dons – playing under Russell Martin at the latter.

Carlton Morris

From there he went to Oakwell and featured prominently as the Tykes reached the Championship play-offs in 2021.

Last season’s top scorer Elijah Adebayo has once again a key figure for the Bedfordshire club.

The London-born striker scored 16 goals and provided four assists in the league, and has eight goals and two assists this term.

Adebayo offers an aerial threat, but has great mobility for his height and a tremendous work ethic.

He joined Luton from Walsall in January 2021 after a run of 18 goals in 39 league games for the Saddlers, while the former Fulham player has also had spells with Cheltenham, Swindon and Stevenage.