LUTON Town fans once infamously flung mops at their York City counterparts.

But, on Saturday, it was the Minstermen who wiped the floor with their visitors from Bedfordshire.

Sweeping into a 3-0 half-time advantage for the second successive Saturday against top-of-the-table opponents, City sent out another significant statement to their fellow Blue Square Bet Premier promotion rivals.

In truth, Gary Mills’ men should have led by a greater margin before the break and, despite failing to find the net during the second period, never looked like letting Luton back into the game.

Ashley Chambers bagged his first-ever brace in senior football either side of an eighth goal of the season from Jason Walker, which silenced the away end’s boo boys who quickly and sensibly decided that abusing their former striker might not result in the desired effect.

Ex-Hatter Walker’s all-round game was as good as it has been all season against the club that sold him for £60,000 in the summer.

Not for the first time in City colours, the diminutive frontman leapt higher than 6ft-plus centre-backs – on this occasion Will Antwi and one-time Minsterman Janos Kovacs – to help set up Chambers’ opening goal.

He went on to rattle a low drive past Mark Tyler, provide the cross for Chambers’ second goal and hit the bar with a spectacular attempt after the interval.

Walker’s intelligence, combined with Chambers’ darting movement and Jamie Reed’s determination, caused the Hatters countless problems in Mills’ fluid three-pronged strikeforce, while midfield magician Andre Boucaud was once more imperious in possession.

The hosts also looked less vulnerable to counter-attacks than they have in some fixtures this season and, despite some outstanding play in the final third of the pitch, were never overly gung-ho in their approach to the game.

Luton were understrength but, while top scorer Amari Morgan-Smith was no doubt missed, it is unlikely that any of the other seven players sidelined would have had an answer for City’s dominance.

The home side forged ahead in the ninth minute when Walker climbed high to meet Michael Ingham’s long ball forward with his head.

Paddy McLaughlin then fed Chambers and, from the corner of the 18-yard box, the former England under-19 international curled a terrific left-footed shot into Tyler’s bottom right-hand corner.

City might have had two more goals before quarter of an hour had elapsed if Reed had been just as emphatic in his finishing.

A back-pedalling Antwi could only head Scott Kerr’s lofted forward ball up in the air but Reed, after checking his bearings, lobbed wide of Tyler’s left-hand post with the Luton ’keeper stranded.

Moments later, Reed was sent clear after the hapless Antwi had misjudged Boucaud’s through ball but, with so much time to think about his options, the City striker sidefooted disappointingly at Tyler.

Reed made amends, though, on 31 minutes when his persistence and power saw him shrug off the challenge of left-back Jake Howells in the Luton penalty box, resulting in the ball breaking to Walker, who drilled a 15-yard first-time strike into Tyler’s bottom right-hand corner.

The visitors managed their first shot of the game on 28 minutes when Stuart Fleetwood hit the roof of the David Longhurst Stand.

Fleetwood then went closer with an edge-of-the-box effort that flashed wide of Ingham’s left-hand upright but the Minstermen added a third goal during the second minute of stoppage time.

Chambers was both the architect and scorer when he fed Walker down the left channel before bombing into the penalty box, where he was on hand to volley into Tyler’s bottom right-hand corner from seven yards after his team-mate’s precise cross.

In the second period, captain Keith Keane’s switch from right-back to the centre of midfield gave Luton a little more presence in that area of the pitch but Chambers almost claimed his hat-trick 40 seconds after the restart when he fired inches wide from 20 yards.

The Hatters might, though, have reduced the deficit on 49 minutes but Jamie Hand blazed over from eight yards after some uncharacteristically slack defending from the home team.

At the other end, Walker’s audacious 25-yard strike had Tyler grasping at thin air but it smacked back off the crossbar.

Right-back Jon Challinor, meanwhile, might have conceded City’s sixth penalty in as many games when he flailed a leg at Robbie Willmott just before the hour mark but referee Tony Harrington remained unmoved.

Shortly afterwards, Ingham made his first save of the afternoon, although Howells’ 67th-minute attempt was drifting wide of his near post. Kovacs’ header from the subsequent corner, therefore, represented Gary Brabin’s side’s first on-target attempt of the match.

A curling 15-yard effort by Keane was also caught at a comfortable height by Ingham before McLaughlin booted a dead-ball chance over the bar with the last kick of the match.

The victory represented Luton’s biggest defeat in two years and, having knocked Wrexham and Saturday’s opponents off the summit of the table in the space of eight days, the Minstermen now travel to joint-top Gateshead knowing three points will see them climb above the north-east outfit.

Match facts

York City 3 (Chambers 9, 45; Walker 31), Luton Town 0

York City: Michael Ingham 8, Jon Challinor 8, David McGurk 8, Jamal Fyfield 8, James Meredith 8, Andre Boucaud 9, Scott Kerr 8, Patrick McLaughlin 8, Jamie Reed 8, Jason Walker 9, Ashley Chambers 9.

Substitutions: Adriano Moké 7 (for Reed, 66), Matty Blair (for Chambers, 76), Liam Henderson (for Walker, 90). Not used: Chris Smith, Daniel Parslow.

Key: 10 – Faultless; 9 – Outstanding; 8 – Excellent; 7 – Good; 6 – Average; 5 – Below par; 4 – Poor; 3 – Dud; 2 – Hopeless; 1 – Retire.

City’s star man: Walker – just gets the nod over Chambers for his intelligent leading of the line and moments of sheer quality.

City’s star man: Walker – just gets the nod over Chambers for his intelligent leading of the line and moments of sheer quality.

Yellow cards: Lawless 34, Fleetwood 63, Blair 88, McGurk 88, Keane 90.

Shots on target: City 6, Luton 3.

Shots off target: City 7, Luton 6.

Corners: City 5, Luton 5.

Offsides: City 3, Luton 2.

Fouls conceded: City 10, Luton 19.

Referee: Tony Harrington (Hartlepool). Rating: decisive, always up with play.

Attendance: 3,570 (606 away fans).

Cross of the match: Walker’s centre for Chambers’ second goal.

Shot of the match: It did not result in a goal but Walker’s crossbar- rattling effort was a highlight.

Head to head - Alex Lawless v Scott Kerr

On his return to Bootham Crescent, Lawless was dispossessed several times in midfield as Kerr and his City team-mates were quick to retrieve the ball.

He did, however, look Luton’s most dangerous player on the couple of occasions he was able to ghost into the penalty box before going off injured at half-time.

Keane then moved into midfield and, like Kerr for City, was a more effective defensive screen for his back four.