Hatters are on Reds alert
SCARRED by their pre-season defeat at Alfreton a year and a half ago Hatters captain George Pilkington is adamant there can be no repeat performance when they visit the Impact Arena in the league for the first time in their history on Saturday, writes Mark Wood.
Pilkington knows some of the Alfreton players from his Port Vale days and believes it will be no easy task against the ever-improving Reds, who are currently 15th in the table.
He said: “Going away to Alfreton, I think we played there a year or two back in pre-season and got thumped 3-0 and it was a bit of an eye-opener.
“It’s going to be a very tough game and one we will have to prepare well for.
“They’ve got stronger as the season’s gone on and climbed higher in the division. I know one or two of the lads through my Port Vale days.
“They are honest lads and work hard and graft. They won’t give you an inch and I’m sure it will be the same on Saturday.”
With Luton’s fate still lying in their own hands, as they are in seventh place, but with games in hands on the play-offs positions, Town’s stars know just how important it is to maintain control of their own destiny.
Following the 4-2 defeat of Hayes & Yeading on Monday, Town’s first win for eight games, Pilkington said: “We know we need to get three points on the board regardless of what’s gone on beforehand.
“It has been a bit of a rough period for everybody involved and the fans have stuck with us.
“It was nice to reward them with some good goals and three points.
“As it stands it’s in our hands, which is fortunate. You go on a run of eight poor results and you expect to be way out of the picture.
“It’s not, we’ve still got five games remaining, five cup finals, and it’s important we take them a game at a time.
“It’s a difficult league, we’ve found that. If you’re not on your game, 10 per cent off it, you get punished.
“I think we’ve more or less used all our lives up. We’ve got to keep winning.
“You don’t want to be in the position where you are looking at other people’s results.
“It’s important we are not in that position and we can just focus on what we do.
“I think that’s vital to achieve success and there’s a lot of hard work to be done between now and the weekend.
“There’s five games (left), but we want to make sure it’s eight and we achieve our goal this season. That’s what we’ll be looking to do.”
With the games coming thick and fast, team-mate Keith Keane didn’t want to look too far ahead either.
He added: “After the Braintree game we were looking at the results and realised that if we win our games, we are in the play-offs.
“That’s all you want. You need it to be in your hands, it’s in our hands.
“It doesn’t matter what anyone else does if we win our games we are in the play-offs and we’ve got to take the positives from that. That’s all we need to concentrate on.
“It is the biggest cliché in football. We are in a period where there’s no point in looking further than the next game because if you don’t win then it can be out of your hands.
“We have to win the next couple of games, or the next game anyway, because if we don’t focus on that and lose or draw it could be out of our hands whether we get into the play-offs.
“There’s not point looking to Gateshead or Fleetwood, because we might not even have a chance to get in there.
“You have to play the next game to try to win it to make sure we stay in the right position to be in the play-offs.”
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Weather for Leighton Buzzard
Tuesday 18 June 2013
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