MARK Warburton has confirmed Charlie Austin will be in his squad for the trip to Luton Town tonight (Tuesday) – and he believes his presence will be hugely beneficial for the strikers already at the club.
Austin signed on loan from West Brom on Saturday and could make his second debut for the club at Kenilworth Road.
Warburton confirmed: “Charlie will be in the squad for Tuesday night.
“Obviously Charlie is a quality player. He is well known at the club, the fanbase know him, he is a proven goalscorer and he will help us on the pitch and off it as well in terms of mentoring the young strikers.
“So Lyndon, Macca and Charlie Kelman will benefit enormously from working with and alongside Charlie Austin.
“And he wants to do that which is really important.”
Austin and his new team-mates will be hoping to get back on track in the Championship this evening against a Luton side who have had a very solid opening half to the season.
After Nathan Jones came back to steer them clear of relegation last term, the Hatters are now occupying a mid-table spot under his guidance.
“They have done very well,” Warburton said.
“They made a very strong start, are very hard to beat and well organised.
“When you watch them play they know their roles and they work really hard, there is a real togetherness and unity about the team.
“We have no doubt about the quality of the opponent we face - but Nathan will know how good we can be as well.
“We know we are a good team and we know we are close, but it’s all about goals – and there’s that broken record again!
“It’s all about putting the ball in the back of the net, that is how you are judged and we have to recognise the importance of doing that better.”
With Luton tonight being followed by a home game against Wycombe at the weekend, it could be argued this is a big week in the season for the players – but Warburton says it can’t be judged like that.
“They are all big weeks,” he said. “You follow this with Cardiff City and Derby County.
“They are all tough games and any team not prepared pays the price. If you are slightly below your best you get hurt. We can’t afford that.”
Ossie Kakay and Lee Wallace aren’t available for tonight’s game but could feature at the weekend when we host the Chairboys.
We have no doubt about the quality of the opponent we face - but Nathan will know how good we can be as well.