MX23RW : Friday, January 18 10:36:16

Nathan Jones admits to emotional Luton exit as he begins tenure at Stoke

Nathan Jones admits to emotional Luton exit as he begins tenure at Stoke
© Reuters
New Stoke boss Jones has become the club's third manager in just a year.

New Stoke boss Nathan Jones revealed he cried after leaving Luton.

The 45-year-old was named as Gary Rowett's replacement on a three-and-a-half year deal on Wednesday.

He spent three years at Luton, winning promotion to Sky Bet League One last season, and moves to the bet365 Stadium with Stoke eight points off the Sky Bet Championship play-offs.

But he admitted it was an emotional exit from Kenilworth Road.

He said: "The amount of times I've cried from text messages from players... it makes me emotional because I was married to the club.

"It's a calculated gamble but it's the right step for me and the club. I think I've left them in the wonderful position.

"It really wasn't (an easy decision). I had a really good place at Luton, it was a wonderful club. We were in  wonderful place.

"When it happens you just have to put things aside and think professionally. It was a real wrench, we built something special at Luton and it would have taken something special.

"I had opportunity to leave (before) and I never did, when this came up it was too good to turn down.

"It became the right decision but not an easy one."

Stoke are 14th in the Sky Bet Championship and Jones becomes their third manager in 12 months after the club sacked Rowett on Tuesday.

But the former Brighton and Yeovil defender has been given no time frame to return the Potters to the Premier League after relegation last season.

"I'm confident, I felt this was the right fit. It was a wrench leaving Luton and at no point had I taken them as far as I could go," he said.

"But I didn't want to start again, I didn't want to go into a place where I'd have to rip the bones out of it.

"I don't just want to be an attractive side, I want to be a successful side. We will get there, how quickly depends on everyone at the club.

"The greatest pressure I will be under will be from myself. The gap is eight points, what we have to do is instil a philosophy and a culture which takes the club forward long term.

"I don't think there's a timescale on it, I haven't been told one."

Jones will also give the squad, many who were in the Premier League last season when the manager was in League Two, a chance to buy into his philosophy.

He added: "I've seen no egos, not one ego, that goes from the hotel staff to the people at the club and especially the players.

"The best way to bridge a gap from lower leagues to where we are now is just do good work."


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Luton Town manager Nathan Jones pictured on December 2, 2018
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Leeds UnitedLeeds27166546281854
2Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd27155746281850
3Norwich CityNorwich27148549351450
4West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom27138655352047
5Middlesbrough271210530191146
6Derby CountyDerby2712783834443
7Bristol City2711883429541
8Birmingham CityBirmingham2791263930939
9Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest2791263931839
10Hull City27116103933639
11Queens Park RangersQPR27116103335-239
12Aston Villa2791174943638
13Swansea CitySwansea27107103632437
14Blackburn RoversBlackburn2791083541-637
15Stoke CityStoke2781183134-335
16Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds2788113245-1332
17Brentford27710103937231
18Preston North EndPreston2779113944-530
19Wigan AthleticWigan2785142840-1229
20Millwall2777133343-1028
21Rotherham UnitedRotherham27510122542-1725
22Reading2758143041-1123
23Bolton WanderersBolton2757151840-2222
24Ipswich TownIpswich2739152246-2418

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