Luton boss admits Canaries taught his side ‘a big lesson’ during friendly thrashing
PUBLISHED: 10:08 28 July 2019 | UPDATED: 11:53 10 February 2020
Luton boss Graeme Jones admitted his team were taught a lesson by Premier League new boys Norwich City during a 5-1 pre-season thrashing at Kenilworth Road.
The Hatters were promoted as League One champions but couldn't cope with a Canaries team seemingly fired up by their own disappointing setback three days earlier, losing 3-1 to Championship side Brentford, amid the fitness intensity of pre-season.
A hat-trick from Switzerland international Josip Drmic was sandwiched by an early Marco Stiepermann slot from close range and a superb fifth from Manchester City loanee Patrick Roberts - of which former Everton and Belgium assistant Jones said: "I don't think a goalkeeper in the world would have stopped that."
Talking to his club's official Youtube channel ahead of a televised league opener against Middlesbrough, Jones said: "A big lesson. I'd rather that happened today than next Friday but I know the Premier League and I know the Championship - and I think it's a wake-up call for everybody.
"We had a game against Maritimo on Wednesday in 30 degrees, I think it took a lot out of the boys, I didn't see the spark that has been there in previous games, and we flew back on Friday.
"So that definitely had an impact, I'll have a look at the physical stats and that will confirm the subject of my opinions but you have to give credit to Norwich as well, they finished 24 places above us last season.
"I know from my own personal encounters with them that they are a very, very capable team, tactically, but in particular, physically I thought they were very, very strong individually.
"So we'll go away, chop it up and we have to learn from it. That's the step up and the step up that we need to get right, a sobering effect but we need to be ready for Friday night, not today."