Preview: Luton Town vs. Cardiff City

As Luton Town chase the dream of a first-ever Premier League appearance, they host a Cardiff City side desperate to avoid the drop on Tuesday evening at Kenilworth Road.

Luton Town were forced into a replay of their FA Cup tie against Grimsby Town on Saturday as they were held to a 2-2 draw at home, while Cardiff City were beaten by Millwall 1-0 in their last outing.

Match preview

Luton Town manager Rob Edwards during the match on January 28, 2023

After finishing in the promotion playoff places in the Championship last season, Luton Town once again have their sights set on a position in the playoffs in their attempt to acquire Premier League football.

The Hatters are currently seventh in the league table with games in hand on the sides above them and could lift themselves into the playoff positions with a win against Cardiff City.

When suffering a disappointing defeat at the hands of West Bromwich Albion, Rob Edwards needed a response from his team. This was duly served when his side bounced back with a substantial 2-0 win away against Wigan Athletic, placing them behind Norwich City in sixth only by goal difference.

With only eight points separating third from 16th in the Championship, it is vital that Luton Town do not slip up against opposition lingering towards the bottom of the table, as the implications of a poor run of form could see them slide down the table at a significant rate.

The potential return of Carlton Morris to the side will be a serious boost for Luton Town’s chances of victory in this match, as the forward has been a vital scorer and provider in the Championship this season, dispatching 11 goals and assisting five in his 26 Championship appearances.

Cardiff City's Jaden Philogene-Bidace celebrates scoring their first goal on January 8, 2023

Meanwhile, Cardiff are in a serious battle against the relentless tide of a relegation battle and will be desperate to acquire a result in this matchup.

Cardiff currently occupy the 21st position in the Championship and are three points clear of Huddersfield Town and Blackpool, however both teams have a game in hand on Cardiff and if they were to win those it could cause some serious complications for the Bluebirds.

A major shortage of goals has been the issue for Cardiff this season, as they have the worst goal return in the division with a woeful record of only 21 – the second lowest in the division in comparison is fellow relegation candidates Huddersfield Town, who have only scored 25 goals this season.

Although, not all is doom and gloom at Cardiff, as new manager Sabri Lamouchi takes charge of his first game as boss in this fixture after Mark Hudson was sacked following the 1-1 draw against Wigan Athletic.

Sabri Lamouchi is expected to install a similar style to which he deployed at Nottingham Forest, establishing discipline and shape into the backline and making Cardiff a strong unit defensively that will look to quickly distribute the ball forward in transitions and counter-attack on opponents.

Team News

Tom Lockyer in action for Luton Town on September 30, 2022

Luton are expected to make two changes to the side that drew with Grimsby Town in the FA Cup on the weekend.

James Bree is no longer at the club after joining Premier League side Southampton with Alfie Doughty set to be Luton’s first-choice right wing-back for the remainder of the season.

It is believed that Allan Campbell will retain his place in the side in favour of youngster Louie Watson in the midfield three.

In-form forward Carlton Morris is also expected to return to the side after suffering from with a calf injury to replace Harry Cornick.

Due to the new managerial appointment of Sabri Lamouchi, it is unclear who the Frenchman will pick in his opening lineup, however, it is predicted that he will make two changes to the team that lost to Milwall in their last fixture.

It is expected that Lamouchi will remain with the 4-2-3-1 formation that Cardiff City are familiar with this season.

Sheyi Ojo and Kion Etete are both set to be dropped for this affair to be replaced by Rubin Colwill and Isaak Davies with Callum Robinson leading the line.

Curtis Nelson will no longer play for the club after his contract was terminated.

Luton Town possible starting lineup:
Hovrath; Doughty, Osho, Lockyer, Potts, Bell; Mpanzu, Watson, Campbell; Morris, Adebayo

Cardiff City possible starting lineup:
Allsopp; Ng; McGuinness, Kipre, O’Dowda; Wintle, Rinomhota; Philogene-Bidace, Colwill, Davies; Robinson

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