Swansea 1 Luton 3

Saturday, 30 March 2002, 0:00
3 mins read

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For the third game running, Nick Cusack and Roger Freestone were afforded the luxury of an unchanged side as they looked to increase their managerial chances by beating the in-form team in the division, Luton having won their previous nine games.

Freestone

De-Vulgt Todd O’Leary Howard

Brodie Mumford Coates Casey

Watkin Williams

For the first time in quite some time, Swansea fans turned up for the game in sleeveless shirts as they basked in the sun that has hit Swansea over the past few days and Luton fans were out in force as they looked to seal their promotion to join Plymouth in the second division next season.
But despite the perfect conditions, it was yet another dull and uneventful half at the Vetch as neither side managed to get themselves up and running with the ball seemingly spending more time in the air than it did on the floor.
Bar Luton’s opening goal there were only two things that really are worthy of a mention during the first half and the first of these was Ryan Casey. If I was to mark Casey out of 10 today then he would receive zero. To say he was awful is probably an understatement as he seemed dis-interested all first half and for a winger has about as much pace as a legless tortoise. There was one incident where the ball was played into space and it was an 80/20 ball in the favour of Casey but the Irish winger managed to turn it into a 90/10 ball for the defender. The fact that he was taken off at half time speaks volumes and the fact that he didn’t take his seat on the bench for the second half just echos those.
The second incident is the injury to Bayliss. He fell awkwardly and immediately you could sense that this was more then just play acting. Once he sat up eye sight alone suggested a dislocated shoulder and he was clearly in discomfort. Of course thhough that does not stop the chants of "Hope he’s dead" which sicken me whenever I hear them especially as one of those that was there in the not too distant past when a Reading player did indeed almost die on the pitch at the Vetch. There is a marked difference between play acting (Valois) and serious injury and when it’s a serious injury chants of Hope he’s dead have no place whatsoever.
Luton’s goal came from a breakaway after O’Leary had lost possession in Luton’s half and Howard broke clear of O’Leary before rounding Roger. The ball could have gone out of play but Howard managed to get a cross in and it was met by the oncoming Matthew Taylor to send the Luton fans wild. Cue the kids trying to get on the pitch but that’s another story.
Romo replaced Caset at the start of the second half to much joy of those that remember his decent 10 minutes in the last 18 months and Sidibe came on for Williams soon after when you would swear that it was the homecoming of the local hero and not a very like for like player.
The second half showed little difference to the first although there were more Luton goals from Holmes and Howard both from breakaways and only Andrew Mumford’s late deflected shot really troubled Emberson in the Luton goal.
In summary today we were very poor. Luton are by no stretch of the imagination a great team but it would be fair to say that they just wanted it more. They battled, they won loose balls and they were capable of finding their own man more often than we were. If this squad is to be cut to 18 professionals a couple of people who played today should be very worried indeed.
Congratulations to Luton on their promotion but I make a prediction that they will struggle next season unless Kinnear can get some new blood in. Can things get better at Rushden on Monday?

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