Following their dramatic 3-3 draw with Middlesbrough in their first game back in the Championship on Friday night, Luton Town are set to play their first away game since returning to the second-tier on Saturday afternoon, when they take on Cardiff City.
It’s a daunting task facing Graeme Jones’ side, with the Bluebirds looking for an immediate return to the Premier League following relegation last season, and already reeling from a 3-2 defeat at Wigan Athletic on the opening day of the season.
Having brought in several new loan signings on Thursday’s transfer deadline day, Jones has plenty of options to chose from as he picks his Luton team to take on one of the promotion favourites this weekend.
So who will Jones name in his starting XI at the Cardiff City Stadium?
Here, we’ve taken a look at who we think could feature for the Hatters on Saturday.
Having employed something of a 4-1-2-1-2 formation against another side expected to push for promotion in Middlesbrough rather successfully last week, we wouldn’t be all that surprised if Jones picks a similar system again on Saturday.
Following a debut that featured both some impressive saves and disappointing errors last Friday, we expect Jones will stick with club-record signing Simon Sluga between the posts in Wales.
Ahead of Sluga, there could be two debuts in the full-back areas for Luton. With Dan Potts a doubt after injuring his shoulder against Middlesbrough, Brendan Galloway, a summer signing from Everton, may start on the left of defence, with one of those deadline day loan signings, Aston Villa’s James Bree, making his first appearance for the club at right-back.
In the centre of defence, we’ve gone for the opening day goalscorers Sonny Bradley and Martin Crainie to start, with Matty Pearson the unfortunate man to drop out.
We expect the central midfield positions to remain pretty much the same, with Ryan Tunnicliffe, Pelly Ruddock-Mpanzu and Martin Shinnie all performing well enough to warrant keeping their starting place from the Middlesbrough game.
The attacking midfield position could then see another debutant, with deadline day loan signing from Chelsea Izzy Brown pushing to start as he looks to banish the memory of that nightmare spell at this level with Leeds last season.
Having made a goalscoring start to life in the Championship last time out, James Collins will surely lead the line again for Luton, while Elliott Lee’s more natural ability as an out and out striker means we’ve selected him to partner the Irishman upfront, leaving Callum McManaman as the man to drop out of the attack.