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REPORT: Luton 2-2 Robins

24 February 2018

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Cheltenham Town conceded a cruel injury time equaliser as league leaders Luton Town snatched a point in a dramatic Sky Bet League Two encounter at Kenilworth Road.

The Robins produced a disciplined and well-drilled first half display to frustrate the in-form Hatters before Joe Morrell's moment of pure magic just before the break.

The midfielder had little on when he collected the ball near halfway, but he powered past one man before unleashing a simply unstoppable drive into the top corner from 30 yards out.

A hugely dramatic start to the second half saw goalkeeper Scott Flinders save a penalty from James Collins before red-hot hitman Mo Eisa grabbed a superb headed goal - his 18th of the season - to put the Robins two ahead.

But high-flying Luton hit back with Luke Berry tucking home from close range before Alan Sheehan scored deep into injury time to grab a point.

Manager Gary Johnson made two changes to his starting line-up as Nigel Atangana and Taylor Moore both returned.

Midfielder Atangana immediately impressed in the opening quarter as he nullified Luton's game and helped spring the Robins forward.

Referee Marc Heywood showed the game's first yellow card after just six minutes, when Flynn Downes was booked after pulling back Harry Pell.

Seconds later the Robins launched a sweeping move up field, after a nice reverse pass from Carl Winchester, but after Pell and Morrell combined the cross from Ilias Chatzitheodoridis was just cut out.

A superb low ball in from Berry saw Collins steer a shot narrowly wide for the home side while Will Boyle's clearing header fell nicely to the feet of Olly Lee but his shot lacked the power to trouble Flinders.

Luton continued to look threatening up top with Collins laying the ball inside to Berry who forced another smart low stop from Flinders.

The Hatters frontman then raced down the left and cracked a low ball across the six-yard box that no Luton player could turn home.

Cheltenham's first big chance came on 35 minutes and was all down to the individual brilliance of Kevin Dawson.

The Irishman had little on when he got the ball on the right side of midfield, but he nutmegged his opposite number and bore down on goal, firing a low shot that Stech did well to turn aside.

The Robins, though, did go ahead five minutes later in stunning fashion as Morrell fired home a wonder goal from 30 yards out to stun Kenilworth Road into silence.

A busy start to the second half saw Luton come out all guns blazing with Harry Cornick getting in behind to collect Shinnie's pass and stab a first-time shot wide of the post.

Drama then erupted as Lee got to a back post cross and saw his effort bobble into the corner - only for the referee to have already blown his whiste and award a penalty before the ball found the net.

Collins stepped up to take the resulting spot kick only for Flinders to brilliantly dive low to his left and keep the spot kick out before getting up and deflecting the follow up over the bar too.

Moments later the visitors tore down the other end, cut the home side wide open and Moore crossed to an unmarked Eisa who nodded home from six yards to spark wild away celebrations.

Luton hit back within three minutes, a right wing cross found Berry and he cooly tucked it home to raise the roof and fire the home response.

The hard-working Eisa continued to look to give the Robins an out ball as he chased and harried up top while Atagana and Grimes did well to snuff out Luton attacks.

Pell was booked after a tussle by the touchline - a yellow that will see him now serve a two-match suspension - while Luton emptied the bench to try and find a leveller.

Flinders reacted well to keep out a stinging drive from Hylton at his near post but there was no stopping Sheehan when he arrived at the back post to power the ball home in the dying seconds.

LUTON: Stech (Gk), Justin, Stacey, Lee (Gambin 77), Shinnie (Jones 57), Cornick, Rea, Berry, Collins (Hylton 57), Downes, Sheehan. Subs not used: Mullins, D'Ath, Shea (Gk).

ROBINS: Flinders (Gk), Grimes, Atangana, Pell, Dawson (Onariase 90), Winchester, Boyle, Eisa (Odelusi 81), Morrell, Moore, Chatzitheodoridis (Rodon 77). Subs not used: Lovett (Gk), Wright, Sellars, Graham.

REFEREE: Marc Heywood

ATTENDANCE: 8,453 (142 from Cheltenham)

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