Luton Town were looking to strengthen their place in the play-off places on Saturday afternoon in Lancashire, but they fell to a 2-0 defeat against Preston North End.
An Emil Riis brace confined The Hatters to their fourth defeat of the season and saw Nathan Jones’ side drop to 10th in the table.
The defeat to The Lilywhites ended a run of five games without a loss and was only their second defeat in 11 Championship matches.
Luton now have home games against Middlesbrough and Stoke City coming up, and whilst they will be after six points, they will have to be on it to succeed.
Here, we take a look at three things we learnt during Luton’s loss at Deepdale…
Quiz: Have each of these 24 ex-Luton Town academy players ever played in the Premier League?
Luton looked lost without Elijah Adebayo
Elijah Adebayo was forced to miss out on Luton’s trip with vastly experienced Championship forward Cameron Jerome starting up top for The Hatters.
However, Luton struggled to put together attacking moves and really stretch the Preston defence, which is something that Adebayo always gives the Bedfordshire club.
Despite operating at League Two level this time last year, Adebayo has enjoyed an excellent rise to starting and starring in the second-tier with Luton.
He is someone who Luton will be desperate to see back in the starting XI as soon as possible.
Play-off position could not be sustained
The Hatters pushed up to fifth in the Championship table following their 1-0 win against Hull in late October, but they are back down to tenth.
A successful season for Luton in any sort of progression from last season’s 12th placed finish, and whilst a season where they compete for the play-offs will certainly be exciting, just remaining a Championship club will keep fans content.
The Hatters have an excellent opportunity to bounce back when Middlesbrough visit Kenilworth Road tomorrow, with Neil Warnock’s side also dropping out of the play-offs following a 2-0 defeat at home to Birmingham City.
Luke Berry was also a big miss
As well as Adebayo missing out, Luke Berry also did not travel following an injury he picked up against Hull.
In fact, Luton started strongly against Hull, with their performance levels slightly decreasing after the midfielder came off.
Berry’s relentless energy and intelligent pressing has helped Luton win back possession high up the pitch and cause the opposition problems, and that is something that was not seen on Saturday.
Like Adebayo, Luton look a better side with Berry in it, and Jones will be hoping that he is not sidelined for too long.