Peterborough United midfielder Erhun Oztumer admits there was an extra incentive for him to play well in yesterday’s (December 6) FA Cup tie with Luton Town at the ABAX Stadium
Oztumer was all set to sign for ‘The Hatters’ in July 2014, but the move fell through because of a negative medical report.
The 24-year-old playmaker gained revenge with a man-of-the-match display as Posh beat Luton 2-0 to earn a place in tonight’s (December 7) third round draw.
“I do have a bit of history with Luton so this was a big game for me,” Oztumer admitted to club TV outlet ‘Posh Player’. “I was close to becoming a Luton player. The deal was done, but they failed me on a medical which came as a big surprise.
“It gave me an extra incentive to do well against them and I was delighted with the way I played and with how the team played.
“Obviously it was great to get the man-of-the-match award, but it could have gone to anyone in the team. Michael Bostwick was outstanding again for a start.
“It was an excellent team display. We didn’t treat Luton like a mid-table League Two side. We gave them every respect, but we played very well and deserved to win.
“The second goal was a long time coming, but we always felt it would arrive as we were playing so well.
“A place in the third round was what we wanted. I will watch the draw with a can of diet coke and a pizza and hope that we get a game at Old Trafford. That’s my dream as I want to play against the best team and the best players.”
Oztumer’s free-scoring form for non-league Dulwich Hamlet attracted the attention of Luton and Posh. He signed for Posh after Luton pulled out, but it’s not been plain sailing at the ABAX for a player dubbed ‘the Turkish Messi’ by his rapidly-expanding fan club.
Oztumer was so far out of previous Posh manager Dave Robertson’s plans he was on the verge of leaving the club in the summer.
“I was out of the door a few months ago,” Oztumer added. “I thought my Posh career was over so I can’t thank Macca (Grant McCann) and the gaffer (Graham Westley) enough for helping me turn things around.
“It’s amazing what they have done with this team. Everyone is playing so well, everyone is so happy in training and in matches. I’m certainly happy to be playing well enough to keep my shirt.”
Luton manager John Still admitted Oztumer enjoyed an outstanding game against his side, but insisted he had no regrets with the club’s decision not to complete the transfer.
“I knew Erhun was a good player,” Still stated. “That’s why I wanted to sign him, but the simple fact is he failed a medical so we couldn’t risk taking him on. He played very well against us.”