Luton 0-0 Reading: Bradley concern for Hatters during stalemate
Luton were held to their sixth home draw of the season by a Reading team who picked up their first on the road this term in a 0-0 stalemate at Kenilworth Road marred by injury to Hatters captain Sonny Bradley.
The Hatters went close early on, James Bree finding the recalled Harry Cornick, but he could not make the most of his shooting opportunity, side-footing well wide of the target.
Luton striker Elijah Adebayo then threatened an opening in the 15th minute, outpacing the visiting defence but failing to beat Royals goalkeeper Joe Lumley from a tight angle.
Lumley made a smart save from Alfie Doughty after he combined neatly with Adebayo to send a low shot goalwards, before Andy Carroll’s header proved an easy claim for Luton stopper Ethan Horvath in the 17th minute.
The hosts were dealt a blow on the half hour when Bradley landed awkwardly after competing for a header and had to be carried off on a stretcher with what looked like a serious ankle injury.
The visitors came close to taking the lead moments later. After Dan Potts’ pass left Tom Lockyer exposed, Tom Ince found Yakou Meite – whose instant low shot was splendidly saved to his right by Horvath.
Carroll might have opened the scoring just before the break, picked out by Junior Hoilett’s searching right wing cross – but the former England international headed disappointingly behind.
Carroll did the same in the second period. After Ince delivered an excellent ball into the area, the ex-Liverpool striker placed his downward header the wrong side of the post.
Luton’s defensive woes worsened on the hour mark when Lockyer was unable to carry on after a clash of heads with Carroll, leaving the hosts with a makeshift back three.
Midway through the second half, Jeff Hendrick took aim from 25 yards, his low drive not missing the target by much, before the impressive Ince unleashed an ambitious volley from 30 yards that drew an acrobatic stop from Horvath.
Luton might have won the game with four minutes to go after substitute Luke Freeman deflected a clearance into the path of Cameron Jerome. His header down was met on the volley by Potts but the ball flew narrowly over.
The Royals finished strongly, with sub Shane Long heading wide at the back post and Tyrese Fornah’s fizzing an effort narrowly over, before Hoilett skewed well wide from long range. However, the Sky Bet Championship spoils were shared.