INTERVIEW: Stevenage’s Ronnie Henry talks Luton Town
- Credit: Archant
Ronnie Henry says he is looking forward to welcoming his former club to what he hopes will be a packed house at the Lamex Stadium on Saturday.
The Hatters had sold out their allocation of 1,900 tickets by Tuesday, and with Boro having picked up four points and two clean sheets from their last two games Graham Westley’s men are going into the match in their best form of the season so far.
The last time Luton Town visited Boro was in April 2010.
On that occasion the visitors won 1-0 to cut Stevenage’s lead at the top of the Conference to just two points, but come the end of the season Boro were promoted and Luton were left to endure another four seasons outside of the Football League.
Henry was the captain when Luton finally won promotion last season, before he returned to Stevenage in the summer.
Speaking ahead of this weekend’s match, the right-back says he had ‘two good years’ at Kenilworth Road, but is now ready to help Boro climb their way up the League 2 table.
“Helping them get promoted to the Football League, it was a fantastic time there,” said Henry.
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“Okay, there’s going to be an extra spark, but I’m looking forward to it just like any other game.
“They’re a good side, they’ve been together now for a couple of years a lot of those players.
“I said they’d do well; they’ve [taken] their time to get going again like us. It’ll be a good contest, and I’m sure it’ll be packed out so I’m looking forward to it.”
Of the team that lost 1-0 to Luton in 2010, four of Boro’s starting XI that day were also in the first team for the 3-0 win at home to Mansfield Town on Saturday: Chris Day, Jon Ashton, Chris Beardsley and, of course, Henry.
For all of the talk about a young team that is learning its way in League 2 this season, Boro’s biggest victory in all competitions for 10 months came with that experienced quartet on the pitch alongside the likes of Charlie Lee, Chris Whelpdale (both with more than 200 Football League games each), Darius Charles (over 150) and Andy Bond (over 100).
“[Ashton, Day, Beardsley] are players who have done a lot here at this football club, and are players that know how to win football matches,” Henry said.
“To line up in the same starting XI as them is an added bonus for the players around them as well as they know what they’re all about.”
And like Henry, Boro’s supporters will be hoping that come this Saturday Westley’s men will be able to pick up another three points.
“I think you remember the last time they came here – they packed out their [areas of the stadium,” Henry said.
“I’m sure they can do that this time. It’ll be a great atmosphere, maybe something that the lads have not played in front of, but we’ve got to step up and perform and I’m sure we will.
“It’ll be a special occasion for myself because I had great memories there.
“I’m looking forward to it and I’m looking forward to seeing some of those fans coming back and seeing what they give to me.
“I had the opportunity to come back here and I took that.
“I felt I had done my job there, I could have stayed there but it was time to move on. I have a lot of respect for everyone at that football club and the fans.”