Seeking a victory at Kenilworth Road to move themselves out of the Premier League relegation zone, Luton Town would be buoyed by the return of Tom Lockyer to the home of the Hatters for the first time since suffering cardiac arrest against Bournemouth last month.
LUT: Kaminski; Bell, Osho, Burke; Doughty, Barkley, Sambi Lokonga, Ogden; Adebayo, Clark; Morris
BHA: Steele; Igor, Dunk, van Hecke; Estupiñán, Gilmour, Groß, Milner; João Pedro, Buonanotte; Welbeck
It took just 18 seconds for Luton Town to seize the lead against Brighton on Tuesday, when Elijah Adebayo nodded home to beat Jason Steele to Carlton Morris’ long ball forwards.
Celebrations had barely died down before Chiedozie Ogbene got the better of the offside trap, smashing an effort past Steele to double the Hatters’ lead with just three minutes on the clock.
The goalmouth action seemed to peter out, but Adebayo was on hand to find his second goal of the match in the dying stages of the first half – latching onto a pass from Ross Barkley before dispatching past a despairing Brighton goalkeeper.
Jordan Clark thought he had added Luton’s fourth soon after play resumed from the interval, but the raising of the offside flag brought a premature end to his celebrations – though Adebayo would cue euphoria in the stands soon after, heading home from Alfie Doughty’s corner to become the first Hatters player to score a top-flight hat-trick since September 1990.Embed from Getty Images
Luton Town’s desire never diminished, and Steele was called upon again as the match neared its conclusion to deny Morris at the near post – but a 4-0 win at home was enough to move the Hatters out of the relegation zone.
Brighton have now won just three of their 16 Premier League matches since September 24th – and while injuries have undoubtedly affected the Seagulls, it’s a patch of form that Roberto de Zerbi will look to bring to an end as his side host Crystal Palace on Saturday.
Luton Town travel to Newcastle United next time out.