Aaron aiming to give Brabin a selection headache

FORWARD Aaron O’Connor gave watching Town boss Gary Brabin another nudge by netting twice as Luton reserves thrashed Oxford United 5-2 at Kenilworth Road yesterday afternoon, writes Mike Simmonds.

The 28-year-old has been in and out of the side recently, but confidently converted a penalty and then netted with an instinctive half-volley that looped into the top corner.

O’Connor said: “The gaffer looks at things like this and training, he’s watching you all the time.

“If you’re not playing you’ve got to take your opportunities like this, knock on the door and show that you still want to get in his thoughts and play a part in the last eight games of the season.

“For the penalty, the keeper did well, he got right out but I managed to hit the side-netting so he didn’t have much of a chance.

“The second one I just took on the half turn. I thought I could get a snapshot, the keeper was struggling and it managed to loop over him.”

O’Connor was delighted to complete 90 minutes after suffering an injury against Wrexham recently and felt it was a good workout for the side.

He said: “I think the main thing was for boys to get some minutes under their belts. A few boys haven’t played recently, same with me.

“It was a hot day, but was good for everyone, good for the bodies, sweat a bit out.

“It was good to get a couple of goals, good to get a win. I know its only the reserves, but they take the league seriously.”

Town netted five goals in a mere 10 minutes either side of half time as they threatened to blow a youthful Oxford side completely out of the water.

The Hatters couldn’t maintain the superiority in the second half though as O’Connor continued: “It’s difficult in this weather.

“We said at half time we weren’t going to do that, but naturally your body just can’t play at that level and intensity for that amount of time.

“They (Oxford) were young lads, fit lads, and they probably got a little bit of a talking to at half time.

“They came out a bit more and stepped their levels up a bit and ours probably dropped a bit.

“That’s because they came at us and scored a couple of sloppy goals, so the second half was more even whereas first half we had a lot more of the play.”

O’Connor was paired up front in a 4-4-2 formation with the returning Dan Walker, who finished his first full game in five months, and the former Rushden man believes his strike partner for the day could push himself into Brabin’s plans for the end of season run-in.

He said: “Me and Dan just said we’d play off each other. We said, when he comes short I’ll go long and when he goes short, I’ll go long and get involved and get more opportunities for a goal.

“I had five or six shots at goal and that’s what you want as a striker.

“He (Walker) gives us another option, someone like Dan might still have a part to play this season.

“I know he hasn’t played a lot, but it’s good to see him back.

“He’s been out for a while and it was only his second game back, but he did well.

“He took his goals well and I thought he looked quite sharp, although he’ll probably feel it afterwards.”

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