Connect with us

Match Day

Luton v CHELSEA: Preview

Date: Saturday 30th December 2023

Venue: Kenilworth Road

Kick-off: 12:30 GMT

The good news is our final game of 2023 kicks off at Kenilworth Road this lunchtime. The bad news is our final game of 2023 kicks off at Kenilworth Road this lunchtime.

Good, because we won’t have to endure any more of the 2023 version of Chelsea. Bad, because this is the fourth consecutive top-flight season Luton have faced us in their final game of the calendar year – and they’ve come out of those with the better win average. The home side have also won 8 out of our last 10 meetings, and we’ve already played them at Stamford Bridge this season, with a 3-0 win against them in August.

Luton, who sit 18th in the table, beat Sheffield United Boxing Day, to give them back-to-back wins, whilst we managed a win over Crystal Palace on Wednesday, albeit with more than a few beads of sweat as the final whistle loomed. Luton look motivated to get the results for their absent captain though and a win today would give them three consecutive top-flight successes for the first time since December 1991, where coincidentally, the third game in that sequence was a 2-0 home win against us.

As for us, well our wastefulness in front of goal continues to bemuse, frustrate, and just bloody well annoy, in equal measure. Similarly, to the Wolves game, we should have been out of sight by half-time against Palace. Obviously, we weren’t, and it looked like it could go the same way, but Madueke came on with a point to prove – and got us a win that was more a relief than a cause for celebration. Gusto well worth a mention from that game though – he was tremendous. Anyway, that win put us back up to 10th in the table, which is frankly, a position we play like we aspire to these days.

We haven’t lost our last game of the calendar year since 2011, but away from home, we’ve lost 4 consecutive games before today and defeat at Kenilworth Road this afternoon would really cap off a spectacularly poor year of football for Chelsea FC.


Going into today’s game, Luton manager, Rob Edwards, says “(Those) numbers don’t play the game – it is players and human beings who play the game. They have still got to gel as well, I’m sure they won’t be fully in their rhythm just yet. They are going to keep improving and this is probably a good time to play them. The numbers don’t matter, get over that white line and when the whistles blows it is 11 v 11, let’s go and have a right good go.

I think it (lack of expectation) helps us, I do. We have our own standards, our own beliefs. I know what these players are capable of – I’ve got total belief and faith in them that we can be competitive in every game. We know what we are going into this year. We know we will be written off by a lot of people, it is understandable and nothing to be taken personally. I think it puts more pressure on them and off us but when I had a meeting with the players, I’m stressing that we want to go and win this game.”

Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino, meanwhile, says Today we are living in a different era, but when you go there, you feel real football. I’m an old man, I am romantic. I love football of the past and this kind of stadium makes you remember when I started to play. It’s a stadium that smells different. It’s not luxury in the way that we recognise luxury today. This type of stadium is one where you love to be there. It’s history, it’s completely different.

We need to go to Luton thinking that it’s going to be really tough. The stadium, the fans, it’s a team that loves to fight and work really hard. If we want to get a good result, we need to be ready of course to play football, but we need to match the desire, the capacity to fight for every single ball. It’s going to be a good test for us.”


For Luton, Reece Burke (thigh), Dan Potts (thigh) and Marvelous Nakamba (knee) miss out and captain Tom Lockyer continues his recovery following his recent cardiac arrest. Jordan Clark has recovered from illness and Issa Kabore (muscular) is also expected to be available again.

For Chelsea, Wesley Fofana (knee), Ben Chilwell (Hamstring), Trevoh Chalobah (thigh), Carney Chukwuemeka (knee), Robert Sanchez (knee), Marc Cucurella (ankle), and Reece James (thigh) all remain out. Enzo Fernandez (hernia) is a doubt, whilst Mykhailo Mudryk and Romeo Lavia both picked up knocks against Palace and will be assessed. Raheem Sterling and Cole Palmer, both return from suspension.


LUTON (Possible line-up): Kaminski; Osho, Mengi, Bell; Doughty, Barkley, Lokonga, Giles; Townsend, Morris; Adebayo

CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Petrovic; Gusto, Disasi, Silva, Colwill; Caicedo, Gallagher; Madueke, Palmer, Sterling; Nkunku







  • This is Luton’s fourth consecutive top-flight season in which their final game of the calendar year comes at home to Chelsea.
  • Chelsea’s only win in the past 13 league games away to Luton was exactly 34 years ago.
  • The home side have won eight of the past 10 league meetings, including Chelsea’s 3-0 win at home in August.
  • Luton will be vying for their third consecutive top-flight win for the first time since December 1991.
  • Luton have taken six points from their past two league fixtures.
  • Chelsea have lost four successive away games.
  • Chelsea have conceded 59 league goals in 2023, their highest figure in a calendar year since 1991 (68).
  • Chelsea have lost 19 Premier League games this year.


Sportsmole: Luton 1-2 Chelsea



Blue is the colour is an honest insight to the World of Chelsea FC. Not always pretty, sometimes rather cynical, but always realistic.


December 2023
« Nov   Jan »
Chelsea News

Chelsea Blog FaceBook Icon Chelsea Blog Twitter
Chelsea News

More in Match Day