Luton head coach Rob Edwards reckons his newly-promoted team can get a positive result at Chelsea on Friday night as “numbers don’t play the game”.
The Hatters have splashed out a reported £20million this summer as they have attempted to bolster their chances of staying in the Premier League, while Chelsea have invested over £900million in new players – including £115million on ex-Brighton man Moises Caicedo alone – over the past three windows.
Friday’s evening’s trip to Stamford Bridge is Luton’s second game of the new campaign following their promotion through the Sky Bet Championship play-offs last term.
Their home game against fellow promoted side Burnley was postponed last weekend as work continues on improving Kenilworth Road.
The trip to west London will highlight the vast difference in spending between the two clubs but Edwards will not be using the shortfall as an excuse.
“Those numbers don’t play the game – it is players and human beings who play the game,” he said.
“They have still got to gel as well, I’m sure they won’t be fully in their rhythm just yet. They are going to keep improving and this is probably a good time to play them.
“The numbers don’t matter, get over that white line and when the whistles blows it is 11 v 11, let’s go and have a right good go.
“I think it (lack of expectation) helps us, I do. We have our own standards, our own beliefs.
“I know what these players are capable of – I’ve got total belief and faith in them that we can be competitive in every game.
“We know what we are going into this year. We know we will be written off by a lot of people, it is understandable and nothing to be taken personally.
“I think it puts more pressure on them and off us but when I had a meeting with the players, I’m stressing that we want to go and win this game.”
Luton have relied largely on free transfer signings to build their squad and one to arrive this summer is England midfielder Ross Barkley, who could be in line to make his debut against his former club on Friday.
“He could indeed,” Edwards replied when asked if Barkley was fit enough to be in contention.
“He’s been training with us obviously now for a couple of weeks. We’ve been delighted with him. So he’s certainly in the mix.”
Edwards also confirmed another free-agent – former Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe – had been training with Luton over the past week and could yet earn a deal at the Bedfordshire outfit.
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