Match Preview | Cardiff City vs. Luton Town
The Bluebirds return to Cardiff City Stadium this weekend, taking on Luton Town. The Hatters arrive in the Welsh capital on Saturday afternoon, with kick-off at 3pm.
How do I watch the match?
A Cardiff City TV Match Pass can be purchased now for just £10 in the UK & Ireland. International Match Passes are available for just £7 per game, or £20 a month.
Cardiff City TV's broadcast includes a pre-match show ahead of a multi-camera production, with commentary and replays.
Supporters in the UK & Ireland can also purchase a Commentary Pass for £5 a month, or for just £35 for the remainder of the 2020/21 campaign.
How do I purchase the matchday programme?
The Bluebird - Luton Town is available to download now!
City supporters across the globe can purchase our official matchday programme for each home game. Digital programmes can be downloaded to any iOS or Android device via the MatchDayInfo App for a reduced cost of £1.99 per edition.
Issue 07 - Luton Town can be downloaded immediately with Joe Bennett as the cover star and feature interview!
Luton Town Preview | Neil Harris
Neil Harris held a pre-match press conference ahead of Saturday's Sky Bet Championship clash with Luton Town.
"The lads know that our current set of results isn't good enough for what's expected of us and, most importantly, what we expect of ourselves," he began.
"I spoke to them from the heart today, to let them know that I care, and I know that they do as well.
"Now, on Saturday it's about picking the right team and tactics and, when the players cross the white line, putting your trust in them."
Opposition Focus: The boss
Nathan Jones was re-appointed as Luton’s boss in May 2020, 16 months after leaving Kenilworth Road for Stoke City. Born in Blaenrhondda, the defender began his playing career in the Cardiff City Academy, and went on to feature for Maesteg Park, Ton Pentre and Merthyr Tydfil. He moved to Luton Town in 1995, but soon departed the club for sunny Spain, joining CD Badajoz of the Segunda División. Having narrowly missed out on a Play-Off place, Jones left the club for CD Numancia, helping the Numantinos earn promotion to the second tier of Spanish football. He returned to Britain with Southend United in 1997, but soon moved to Brighton & Hove Albion, where he enjoyed the majority of his playing success. With the Seagulls, Jones won three promotions in five seasons, making 183 appearances in an Albion shirt. He retired in 2012 after spending seven seasons with Yeovil Town, including the 2007/08 campaign which saw him captain the side to the League One Play-Off Final.
Fluent in both English and Spanish, Jones took up his first coaching position with Charlton Athletic, aiding their U21 team. He soon returned to his former club Brighton, assisting Óscar Garcia, Sami Hyypiä and Chris Hughton at the Amex Stadium between 2013 and 2016. Jones took up his debut managerial position at another former club, Luton, in January 2016, steering the Hatters away from the League Two relegation zone during his first season in charge. After reaching the Play-Offs in 2016/17, Luton went one better in 2017/18, securing automatic promotion to League One with a second place finish. The following season, Jones had unexpectedly led Town to the top of the League One table when Stoke City came calling for his services. He moved to the Bet365 Stadium in January 2019, but was dismissed after eight months following a torrid start to the 2019/20 campaign. In May this year, Luton turned to their former boss for a second stint in charge, with Jones able to help the club avoid relegation upon his return.
Opposition Focus: Season so far
The Hatters have made a promising start to the Championship campaign, and currently occupy 11th position. Four points behind 6th place Reading, Luton have won five of their league fixtures, drawing four and losing four. Jones’ men are unbeaten in their last four matches, although three of those games, against Huddersfield Town, Blackburn Rovers and Birmingham City, have ended in 1-1 draws.
Luton’s last victory came at the start of November, when James Collins’ solitary strike secured a 1-0 win at Rotherham United. The 29-year-old is the club’s top scorer with five goals this term, although three of those strikes came in a Carabao Cup victory over Norwich City at the start of the season. At the other end, the Hatters have kept four Championship clean sheets thus far, with record signing Simon Sluga starting between the sticks.
Jones made a host of new signings during the summer window, with eight arrivals in total. Three Welsh internationals joined the club in the window: defender Tom Lockyer, midfielder Joe Morrell and wing-back Rhys Norrington-Davies signed from Charlton Athletic, Bristol City and Sheffield United respectively. Full-back James Bree and attacking midfielder Jordan Clark also arrived at Kenilworth Road, whilst young midfielder Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall joined on loan from Leicester City.
Opposition Focus: Ones to watch
Luke Berry joined Luton since 2017, and has won two promotions with the club. The midfielder has become an integral part of Nathan Jones’ side, and featured in the final six matches of last season, which saw Luton avoid relegation by winning three and drawing two. This term, the 28-year-old has already bettered his goalscoring tally from 2019/20, having netted two Championship strikes against Derby County and Blackburn Rovers, and has also recorded one assist.
Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu is another long-term Luton player, having signed for the club in 2014. The midfielder has made over 260 appearances for the Hatters, proving himself to be a capable force at Championship level. The 26-year-old has started 11 of Town’s 13 league fixtures, and, whilst susceptible to the occasional yellow card, Mpanzu is capable in front of goal, having also netted twice during the current campaign.
Rhys Norrington-Davies, pictured above with Harry Wilson, made his debut for the Welsh national team back in October, having impressed for Luton since his arrival at Kenilworth Road. The left-back joined Sheffield United in 2017, and was signed by Luton for the duration of the season following eye-catching loan spells at Barrow and Rochdale. Effective in attack, the 21-year-old has already shown his abilities by delivering two assists, the club’s highest contributor this term.