Luton Town F.C. Players
Luton Town Football Club is an English football club based since 1905 at Kenilworth Road, Luton, Bedfordshire. The side currently plays in the Conference National, the fifth tier of football in England. Founded in 1885, Luton Town became the first professional team in southern England six years later and joined The Football League in 1897. After leaving the League in 1900 due to financial strife, Luton Town competed in the Southern League until Football League membership was regained 20 years later. After a 89-year period of League membership, the team was relegated to the Football Conference in 2009 due to a 30-point deduction imposed by the football authorities.
Luton Town's first team has competed in numerous nationally-contested competitions, and the 50 players judged in 2009 the club's best by Denis O'Donoghue of The Times are listed below. In addition, all players who have appeared 100 times for the club in these competitions are given. Club record holders are also included, regardless of the number of matches they played.
Fred Hawkes holds the record for most league appearances for the club, having played 509 matches between 1901 and 1920. The closest to Hawkes's record is Bob Morton, who appeared 495 times between 1948 and 1964. Including all senior competitions, Morton leads the chart with 562 compared to Hawkes's 549. As of 1 July 2009, the player who has won the most international caps while at the club is Mal Donaghy, who appeared 58 times for Northern Ireland.
The goalscoring record is held by Gordon Turner, who scored 276 goals between 1949 and 1964. Turner's tally of 243 league goals is also a club record. Turner's nearest rival is Andy Rennie, whose 147 league goals, 162 in total, were scored between 1925 and 1934. Joe Payne holds the Luton Town record for the most goals scored in a season, set in 1936–37, with 55 league goals in 39 Third Division South games and 58 in all competitions. Payne also holds the Football League record for most goals in a match, with 10 during a 12–0 victory over Bristol Rovers on 13 April 1936. Turner holds the club record for most goals in a top-flight season, with 33 league goals and 38 overall during 1957–58.