Soccer in England: Luton Town have risen from the Fifth Division to the Premier League in less than ten years


Imagine if a city the size of Gatineau ended up in the NHL. This is exactly what the inhabitants of Luton will experience from next August.

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Luton Town FC, a very modest club after all, has been promoted to the Premier League, the most popular football league in the world.

Luton is a city of 225,000 located about fifty kilometers northwest of London. The agglomeration has 286,000, a population equivalent to that of Gatineau.

It’s a story that shows us that the promotion and relegation system can provide magical moments in sport.

A little

Luton Town needed a play-off, which they also won on penalties against Coventry last Saturday, to secure their ticket to the Premier League. It’s a return to the Premier League for the club which played there in the 1980s. Luton Town last played at the top level in 1992.

But this great story may not have happened since the small club experienced a dizzying fall to tumble to Division 5 nine years ago.

This is the same level where Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds’ most famous Wrexham AFC played.

Luton Town experienced financial troubles which almost led to its demise and which led to the biggest penalty in the history of English football, a handicap of 30 points during the 2008-2009 season.

The rescue of the club notably passed through its supporters who partly own it through the Luton Town Supporters Trust which owns more than 50,000 shares. This cooperative also has a right of veto on major changes that may occur in the club.

Fans have their team at heart and are part owners.


Fans have their team at heart and are part owners.

folk stadium

We wonder how the big names in the Premier League will enjoy their visits to Kenilworth Road, the club’s stadium which hosts just over 10,000 spectators. He will obviously be the smallest in the league.

The stadium is dilapidated although it has undergone some renovations over the years. After all, it was built in 1905.

But what makes it special is that it is right in the heart of a residential area, being surrounded by houses on three of its sides, a railway line passing behind the other facade.

To access the stadium, doors have been installed on the facades of the houses that are backed by the structure. Yes, yes, the spectators pass squarely in the backyard of the residents.

However, the stadium is due for an update in the coming months. An investment of over £10 million (C$16.8 million) is planned.

To access the stadium, the entrances are located through the houses that line the enclosure.


To access the stadium, the entrances are located through the houses that line the enclosure.

Small expenses

According to the market value analysis of the Transfermarkt website, Luton Town’s squad of 27 players is worth 35 million euros (C$50.5 million).

By way of comparison, the highest paid player on the circuit, Kevin De Bruyne, receives 24.2 million euros (34.9 M$ CAD) from Manchester City.

The club is more focused on the development of its own players or, a bit like CF Montreal, on the development of young people who are bought at little cost.

His biggest transfer was a €2 million (C$2.9 million) transfer for striker Carlton Morris from Barnsley last summer. The transaction paid off as he largely contributed to the promotion of the team in the first division with his twenty goals.

A first

And because the beautiful story has only just begun, we have to tell you about Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu, a Congolese international who arrived at the club in 2014.

This was when Luton Town was in the Fifth Division where the players are officially amateurs.

He has been on the rise year after year and has become an indelible member of the club known as the Hatters.

When Luton Town embark on their Premier League journey next August, it will be history to move from amateur football to the Premier League with the same club. We have a movie script right there.


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