Luton Town pull off Championship survival with dramatic win over Blackburn

Luton Town celebrate one of Blackburn's own goals at Kenilworth Road.
Luton Town celebrate one of Blackburn's own goals at Kenilworth Road. Credit: PA
  • Luton Town 3-2 Blackburn Rovers

Luton Town retained their Championship status thanks to a nail-biting 3-2 win over Blackburn Rovers on the final night of the season.

The Hatters started the game in the bottom three, but despite falling behind, Nathan Jones' side got the three points they needed to survive.

It marks a remarkable turnaround for Luton who were six points adrift of safety when Jones returned to the club in May.

  • Watch an interview with Luton Town fan Kevin Harper

His re-appointment was met with anger from some supporters who were still upset that he'd left them to join Stoke in January 2019, but you can be sure they will have forgiven him now.

Once again, they had to do it the hard way at Kenilworth Road as Adam Armstrong's finish put the visitors ahead.

James Collins scored Luton's third from the penalty spot. Credit: PA

However, two astonishing bits of fortune turned the game on its head.

Firstly, Hayden Carter headed into his own net from a Luton free-kick, and then former Norwich midfielder Bradley Johnson did the same thing from a corner just a few minutes later.

The Hatters extended their lead on the hour mark as James Collins tucked away a penalty after Harry Cornick was fouled in the box.

A late goal from Blackburn's Sam Gallagher set up a nerve-racking finish but Luton held on to pull off the great escape.

The result means Luton finish 19th in the table - a fantastic achievement considering their small budget and the fact they were only promoted from League One last season.

In fact, no team lost fewer games (one) since the league restated in June than Luton.

Speaking after the game, Hatters boss Nathan Jones described staying in the league as a "wonderful achievement."

"To get 16 points from a possible 27, nine games, is a phenomenal return considering where we were," he said.

"I would have thought a handful of individuals would have thought we would do it, and this is as great an achievement as promotion really. It’s over a shorter period of time as I mentioned in my press, but what a wonderful achievement, I’m so proud.”

Kenilworth Road will be hosting Championship football again next season. Credit: PA

Wigan's 12-point deduction means they are relegated, along with Charlton Athletic and Hull City who both suffered heavy defeats at Leeds United and Cardiff City respectively.

Remarkably, Barnsley also survived thanks to a last-minute winner at Brentford, but they could still find themselves in the third tier next season if Wigan's appeal against their points deduction is successful.