Bristol Rovers remain three points above the League One relegation places after falling to defeat against table-topping Luton Town last Saturday, writes Stephen Knowlson.

Graham Coughlan made three changes to the side which slumped to a heavy loss against Doncaster, bringing in Nichols, Sercombe and Kelly at the expense of Jakubiak, Reilly and Holmes-Dennis.

Rovers were not overawed by their Championship-bound opponents and gave as good as they got in the opening stages. But the initial good work was undone when we conceded early again with James Collins being given the freedom of the Rovers’ six-yard area to slot in at the far post on 16 minutes.

It was a pretty soft goal to present to a team as accomplished as the Hatters and it put them straight onto the front foot as they sought to double their advantage. The Gas defence held out until the 38th minute when Luton’s Luke Berry struck a loose ball which deflected past Jack Bonham in the Rovers goal.

Being two nil down with less than 40 minutes on the clock, Gasheads could be forgiven for fearing another hiding but the team were playing fairly well and managed to pull a goal back minutes before half time. Ed Upson provided an excellent pass to set Jonson Clarke-Harris free and the big striker did the rest, beating a defender and drilling a finish past Shea in the visitor’s goal.

Rovers were always in the game being just one goal down but despite some decent approach play we couldn’t find a way past a well-drilled Luton defence. Clarke-Harris had a shot blocked near the line and sub Jakubiak headed wide but that was about as much as we threatened in the second half.

Luton had last been beaten back in October, and it showed - they were very well-organised and played with a lot of confidence. Our problem, as ever this season, is goals. Clarke-Harris is our only threat at the moment and other players, Sercombe and Nichols in particular, need to rediscover their scoring form to help our big man up front.

The next opportunity to put some daylight between us and the League One trap door is this Saturday with a trip to Coventry. I fancy us to take something from this game.