Luton Town 3-0 Preston North End: Hatters secure comfortable victory in dominant display
(David Horton - CameraSport/Getty Images)

Story of the match 

1st half:

The hosts started the game on the front foot, but were unable to create any chances with their early pressure. 

Preston North End reacted well to The Hatters bright start and created a couple of chances themselves with Jayden Stockley and Alan Browne both firing over in quick succession. 

Luton Town took the lead in the 20th minute, when James Collins expertly converted from inside the area after Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu's inch perfect through ball. 

The Hatters continued to pile on the pressure after their opener and deservedly doubled their lead nine minutes later. Collins grabbed his second of the game, nodding home Glen Rea's looping ball back into the box. 

Despite their two-goal lead, there was no sign of Luton slowing down and looked particularly threatening from the wide areas, with George Moncur and Harry Cornick causing Darnell Fisher and Andrew Hughes all sorts of problems. 

2nd half:

Preston managed to keep possession better at the start of the second half, but struggled to create an opening. 

Mpanzu nearly made it three for the hosts on the hour mark, striking over after Preston gave possession away in their own third of the pitch. 

Collins secured the match-ball in the 66th minute, turning and firing into the bottom corner - his second hat-trick of the season. 

Centre-back Tom Lockyer somehow missed from no more than two yards out, heading wide from Rhys Norrington-Davies' free-kick. 

Forward Sam Nombe replaced Collins in the 86th minute to a standing ovation as Luton saw off very limited late Preston pressure with ease. 

Takeaways

It was a dominant display from start to finish from The Hatters who recorded their biggest win of the season. They looked organised at the back and attacked with purpose, sustaining this throughout the 90 minutes.

Whereas, Preston really struggled throughout the duration of the match, and never caused Luton’s defence any problems. A surprising performance and result from The Lilywhites who prior to kick-off, possessed the best away record in the division.

Standout performers

It was a brilliant team performance from The Hatters, but it would be wrong to single out James Collins. He scored all three goals for Luton and worked tirelessly for the 90 minutes. He also held up the ball brilliantly and combined with the midfield and his wingers time and time again.

Despite Preston’s poor performance, Darnell Fisher was one player who had a respectable game. He made a number of tackles and interceptions during the 90 minutes and looked to carry the ball forward when presented with the opportunity.

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