Luton Town striker Andre Gray grabbed a hat-trick as the Conference Premier leaders thrashed Hereford United.

Gray's close-range finish put the Hatters ahead and the home side were rampant after the break.

Paul Benson's near-post header made it 2-0 and Jake Howells scored a penalty after Kingsley James tripped Benson.

Since the January transfer deadline day sale of Hereford's midfield linchpin Josh O'Keefe to Kidderminster Harriers, the Bulls have played twice, lost twice, not scored and shipped ten goals in the process.

Pelly Ruddock curled in a fourth, Gray made it 5-0 from 18 yards and got his third from Alex Lawless's cross before substitute Jon Shaw finished the rout.

It was Luton's 10th win in their last 11 games and stretched their unbeaten run to 22 matches and their lead at the top of the table to nine points.

Meanwhile, the result was not only Hereford's heaviest loss of the season but their worst league defeat in 50 years.

It outstripped the 7-1 Division Three battering at Mansfield on Boxing Day 1994, matching the 7-0 Southern League humiliation against Hastings United in the 1963-64 season.

The Bulls were also beaten 7-0 by Division One side Middlesbrough in a League Cup second-round first-leg tie in 1996.

VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Luton Town manager John Still told BBC Three Counties Radio:

"If we're successful this year, it won't be me, or the players, or the supporters, or the ground staff, or the directors. It will be everybody.

"The wind was swirling. It was difficult to move the ball if I'm being honest. But we felt if we got to the second half without being too badly damaged, we could play our pass-and-move football - and we did.

"I thought at half time we'd be okay, because the conditions going that way were much easier for us."

Lineup, Bookings (5) & Substitutions (6)

Luton Town

  • 01 Tyler
  • 25 Henry
  • 12 Griffiths
  • 02 Franks
  • 11 Howells (Lawless - 76' )
  • 43 Ruddock Mpanzu
  • 05 McNulty
  • 21 Guttridge Booked
  • 19 McGeehan Booked (Robinson - 69' Booked )
  • 27 Gray
  • 26 Benson (Shaw - 79' )

Substitutes

  • 06 Charles
  • 23 Robinson
  • 07 Lawless
  • 16 Justham
  • 09 Shaw

Hereford United

  • 21 Lloyd-Weston
  • 02 Leadbitter
  • 06 Graham
  • 05 McDonald
  • 03 Bush Booked (Collins - 70' )
  • 22 Edge
  • 04 James Booked (Purdie - 59' )
  • 17 Brown
  • 15 Rankine
  • 10 Sharp (Smith - 62' )
  • 09 Walker

Substitutes

  • 30 Williams
  • 01 Evans
  • 12 Collins
  • 07 Purdie
  • 11 Smith
Ref: Darren Handley
Att: 7,111

Match Stats

Shots

21 6

On target

12 1

Corners

0 0

Fouls

9 12

Live Text Commentary

+4:00 Full time

Full Time Match ends, Luton Town 7, Hereford United 0.

90:00 +4:17 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Luton Town 7, Hereford United 0.

90:00 +2:51 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 7, Hereford United 0. Alex Lawless (Luton Town) right footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Matt Robinson.

90:00 +2:39

Attempt saved. Matt Robinson (Luton Town) right footed shot from outside the box is saved.

90:00 +1:56

Foul by Jonathan Brown (Hereford United).

90:00 +1:56

Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

90:00 +1:16

Foul by Jamie Edge (Hereford United).

90:00 +1:16

Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

89:34

Offside, Hereford United. Michael Rankine tries a through ball, but Michael Rankine is caught offside.

84:06

Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

83:26

Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

81:19 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 6, Hereford United 0. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Alex Lawless with a cross.

80:17

Attempt missed. Jonathan Brown (Hereford United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Dan Walker.

79:46

Corner, Hereford United.

78:17 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Luton Town. Jon Shaw replaces Paul Benson.

78:02

Attempt saved. Michael Rankine (Hereford United) header from the centre of the box is saved. Assisted by Robert Purdie with a cross.

75:27 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Luton Town. Alex Lawless replaces Jake Howells.

74:08

Foul by Rod McDonald (Hereford United).

74:08

Luke Guttridge (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

73:19

Attempt missed. Jonathan Brown (Hereford United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left from a direct free kick.

72:28 Booking

Booking Matt Robinson (Luton Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

72:21

Foul by Matt Robinson (Luton Town).

72:21

Michael Rankine (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

71:39

Attempt saved. Fraser Franks (Luton Town) header from the centre of the box is saved. Assisted by Jake Howells.

70:57

Corner, Luton Town.

69:51

Corner, Hereford United.

69:14 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Hereford United. Dominic Collins replaces Chris Bush.

68:50 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Luton Town. Matt Robinson replaces Cameron McGeehan.

67:49 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 5, Hereford United 0. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Luke Guttridge.

66:37

Foul by Sam Smith (Hereford United).

66:37

Ron Henry (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

63:15

Attempt blocked. Luke Guttridge (Luton Town) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

62:12

Foul by Daniel Leadbitter (Hereford United).

62:12

Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

61:14 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Hereford United. Sam Smith replaces Chris Sharp.

59:21 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 4, Hereford United 0. Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box to the top right corner. Assisted by Paul Benson.

58:28 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Hereford United. Robert Purdie replaces Kingsley James.

58:17

Attempt missed. Kingsley James (Hereford United) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jonathan Brown with a cross.

55:41 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 3, Hereford United 0. Jake Howells (Luton Town) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the top left corner.

55:06

Penalty conceded by Kingsley James (Hereford United) after a foul in the penalty area.

55:06

Penalty Luton Town. Pelly Ruddock draws a foul in the penalty area.

53:20 Booking

Booking Chris Bush (Hereford United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

53:05

Foul by Chris Bush (Hereford United).

53:05

Andre Gray (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

52:33

Foul by Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town).

52:33

Daniel Leadbitter (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

48:32 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 2, Hereford United 0. Paul Benson (Luton Town) header from the right side of the six yard box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Cameron McGeehan with a headed pass.

48:14

Corner, Luton Town.

47:52

Foul by Kingsley James (Hereford United).

47:52

Luke Guttridge (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

47:18

Attempt missed. Paul Benson (Luton Town) header from the right side of the box is too high. Assisted by Jake Howells.

46:49

Corner, Luton Town.

45:22

Attempt blocked. Jake Howells (Luton Town) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

45:00

Second Half begins Luton Town 1, Hereford United 0.

45:00 +2:09 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Luton Town 1, Hereford United 0.

45:00 +1:43

Attempt missed. Paul Benson (Luton Town) header from the right side of the box is too high. Assisted by Luke Guttridge.

45:00 +0:54

Corner, Luton Town.

45:00 +0:39

Attempt blocked. Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

42:25 Booking

Booking Kingsley James (Hereford United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

42:17

Foul by Kingsley James (Hereford United).

42:17

Luke Guttridge (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

38:18 Booking

Booking Luke Guttridge (Luton Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

38:01

Foul by Luke Guttridge (Luton Town).

38:01

Kingsley James (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

37:39

Attempt missed. Rod McDonald (Hereford United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

36:42 Booking

Booking Cameron McGeehan (Luton Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

36:20

Foul by Cameron McGeehan (Luton Town).

36:20

Jonathan Brown (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

35:10

Foul by Luke Guttridge (Luton Town).

35:10

Dan Walker (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

33:07

Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right.

29:38

Corner, Hereford United.

25:50

Foul by Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town).

25:50

Chris Sharp (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

23:17

Foul by Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town).

23:17

Daniel Leadbitter (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

22:04

Foul by Chris Sharp (Hereford United).

22:04

Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

21:42

Attempt saved. Paul Benson (Luton Town) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved.

19:26

Foul by Jamie Edge (Hereford United).

19:26

Andre Gray (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

18:09

Attempt missed. Chris Sharp (Hereford United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high.

17:15

Foul by Steve McNulty (Luton Town).

17:15

Michael Rankine (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

16:26

Foul by Luke Guttridge (Luton Town).

16:26

Kingsley James (Hereford United) wins a free kick.

15:21

Corner, Luton Town.

11:08 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Luton Town 1, Hereford United 0. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Cameron McGeehan.

11:00

Attempt saved. Cameron McGeehan (Luton Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved.

9:15

Corner, Hereford United.

5:21

Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Jake Howells with a cross.

4:16

Attempt saved. Andre Gray (Luton Town) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved.

1:08

Foul by Michael Rankine (Hereford United).

1:08

Steve McNulty (Luton Town) wins a free kick.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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