12:11pm Friday 9th March 2012
By Dave Flett
LUTON Town will be without seven players for tomorrow’s FA Trophy semi-final, first leg at York City, while joint-top scorer Stuart Fleetwood is also doubtful.
Jean-Paul Kissock is suspended for the Bootham Crescent clash after being sent off in the 90th minute of Wednesday night’s 2-0 defeat at Wrexham, so will join crocked trio Amari Morgan-Smith, Dan Gleeson and James Dance on the sidelines.
Former City midfielder Andre Boucaud, who was substituted during the interval at the Racecourse Ground after giving the ball away for the hosts’ second goal, is cup-tied having played for Gary Mills’ men earlier in the competition against Solihull Moors.
On-loan Newport forward Craig McAllister is also ruled out for the same reason, along with Godfrey Poku, who played in the Trophy during a loan stint at Southport.
Fleetwood, meanwhile, faces a late fitness test on the ankle injury that caused him to miss the Wrexham match.
Should he be unavailable, then the Hatters would once more be without both of their joint ten-goal top scorers with Morgan-Smith currently dogged by hamstring problems.
In their absence, Danny Crow and Aaron O’Connor, who have each plundered nine goals in 2011/12, are likely to continue leading the line.
Fleetwood is the Bedfordshire club’s leading marksman in the Trophy with three goals, including efforts in each round prior to the 2-0 quarter-final victory over Gateshead.
Gary Brabin’s men have also disposed of Swindon Supermarine, Hinckley and Kidderminster on their way to the last four, conceding just one goal along the way.
That defensive fortitude recently saw the Hatters set a new club record of ten consecutive clean sheets at home but, on their travels, a defeat at Bootham Crescent would represent the first time the former League Cup winners have lost three successive away fixtures since April 2008 when they were a League One outfit.
Prior to the Wrexham loss, Luton went down 1-0 at Barrow and have now won just one of their last five games on the road.
While Boucaud is ineligible, fellow former Minstermen Alex Lawless and Janos Kovacs are certain to feature from the start.
Luton are also expected to revert to a 4-4-2 formation with former Cambridge United winger Robbie Willmott replacing Boucaud in the starting line-up.
Luton Town (probable): Tyler, Asafu-Adjaye, Kovacs, Pilkington, Howells, Taylor, Keane, Lawless, Willmott, Crow, O’Connor.
LUTON Town and York City have only met once before in cup football.
In the FA Cup in 1978/9 they were paired in the third round when at the time City were in the Fourth Division and the Hatters in the Second Division (Championship).
City won 2-0 with goals from Gordon Staniforth and Kevin Randall in front of 6,730.
The side on January 9, 1979, was: Brown, Kay, Walsh, Pugh, Faulkner, Clements, Ford, Randall, Loggie, McDonald, Staniforth.
1951: John Linaker scored both goals in a 2-0 home win over New Brighton and the attendance for this Division Three North encounter was 6,386.
1956: A run of nine league games without a win ended with a 3-1 victory over Carlisle United at Bootham Crescent in front of 9,782. On target were Arthur Bottom (2) and Billy Hughes.
1969: 18-year-old Chris Topping netted his first goal for the club in a 2-1 home win over Workington watched by 3,395. The other scorer in this Fourth Division game was Ted MacDougall.
1979: A Fourth Division 3-2 win at Scunthorpe United with goals from Kevin Randall (2) and Andy Clements.
1984: City strengthened their lead at the top of the Fourth Division with a 3-1 win at Torquay United. Gary Ford, Keith Walwyn and John Byrne were on the scoresheet.
1998: Barry Jones and Richard Cresswell netted in a 2-1 Second Division (League One) win at Bristol Rovers.
2007: City were third in the Conference following a 2-0 win at Aldershot thanks to goals from Manny Panther and Craig Farrell.
Compiled by David Batters
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