A brand new team will be competing in the Premier League in 2023-24, as Luton Town gained a memorable promotion to England’s top flight at the end of a dramatic Championship Playoff final. It has been a memorable campaign for both Luton and Coventry, and nerves were high as the two sides clashed at Wembley Stadium in the richest game in football.
It highlights the incredible rise of both sides that a fixture between the two was played in League Two as recently as 2018, but it was Luton that gained promotion to the top flight after coming close last season. However, it will be a challenge for the Hatters, as they have been immediately listed as the favourites to suffer relegation with the leading Congo sports betting online sites. But, could they upset the odds?
Luton Gain Memorable Promotion
It has been a historic run to the top level of English football for the Hatters, as they were competing in the National League in the 2013-14 season after financial difficulties. However, back-to-back promotions from League Two and League One between 2017 and 2019 allowed fans to believe that they could return to the top flight.
That dream appeared closer than ever throughout the 2022-23 season, as they finished third in the overall Championship standings. The playoffs are always a nervy experience for fans, and Luton may have felt their chance was over after a 2-1 defeat against Sunderland in the semi-final first leg. However, they set up a Wembley date with Coventry following a 2-0 home win in the return match between the sides at Kenilworth Road.
Another nervy game was played out at Wembley, with Coventry and Luton being tied level at 1-1 after 120 minutes of action. However, Luton wasn’t to be denied their shot at history, as they landed success in the penalty shootout, marking their first return to the top flight since 1992. The promotion also saw Luton become the first club to return to the top flight after having been relegated to the fifth tier in history.
Luton Led By Congo’s Mpanzu
Luton’s promotion also led to huge celebrations in Africa, as it was a huge moment for DR Congo’s Pelly Mpanzu. He will be making history in the Premier League next season, as he will become the first player in English footballing history to have played from non-league tiers to the top flight with the same club. Mpanzu has been a fine illustration of the character shown by Luton throughout their modern history, as he signed from the club in 2013 with the club playing in the National League.
His deal was extended in 2014, and he gained promotion with the team from the National League in 2014. Mpanzu’s role in the team would continue to be key for the Hatters, as they gained back-to-back promotions from League Two and League One, before kicking off their 2019-20 season back in the second tier. The midfielder was a key player throughout the promotion-winning season last term, as he played 26 times for the Hatters, scoring three goals in the Championship.
If there is one player that highlights the long-standing success achieved by sticking to a set plan, then Mpanzu is it. The midfielder has played over 360 games since joining Luton in 2013, but none will be more rewarding that his first appearance in the Premier League at the start of the 2023-24 season.
Can Luton Stay Up?
Following their promotion to the Premier League, all eyes will now be set on the upcoming season back in the top flight. There is no secret that the Hatters are expected to struggle on their return, but there has been no shortage of examples to highlight that well-run clubs can excel. Recent examples of that can be found in the successes achieved by Brighton, Brentford, and Bournemouth, who may all be smaller clubs than most in the Premier League, but they have been able to maintain their status in the top-flight by sticking to the plan that they were promoted with.
Luton will be looking to follow that same blueprint when they take to the field in the Premier League, but the transfer window will be key to their chances of remaining in the division past the coming season. Adding quality players will be key to their chances, but they won’t go into the new season fearful.
Luton Town will be a fine addition to the Premier League in the 2023-24 season, and the excitement levels will already be high ahead of trips to Old Trafford, Anfield, and the Emirates. But, the games against teams at the bottom of the standings will likely be key to their chances of survival.
However, they will dare to dream that they are good enough to achieve their goals, just as they have done on their route back to the top flight from the National League.