Ice-cool Barry Conlon admitted his last-gasp leveller at Luton was the biggest penalty of his career.

And the Irishman revealed how he refused to fall for the home side’s mind games as a dramatic clash descended into mayhem.

Conlon’s spot-on finish earned City a 3-3 draw in a pulsating contest that also saw Stuart McCall sent to the stand by controversial official Trevor Kettle.

The penalty, awarded when Chris Martin tripped Steve Jones, capped another tense fightback. City had trailed 2-0 at the interval and then fell behind again in stoppage time.

Conlon had to wait over four minutes to take it while players from both sides had to be pulled apart and Martin was sent off.

He said: “There was chaos going on all round the edge of the box but I daren’t get involved. It would have been easy to help the other lads but that would have distracted me.

"I had to keep an eye on the Luton keeper, who was trying to put me off. I could see him putting divots on the penalty spot and rubbing mud on the ball.

“He kept asking me where I was going to put the kick but I didn’t get mixed up with the mind games. I knew it was do or die and I’m pretty pleased with myself for putting the penalty away.

“We deserved at least a point and there was a real sense of achievement afterwards. We can go to Bury tomorrow on a positive note now.”

Luton accused Jones, who was playing as a striker, of diving but he said: “I went to strike the ball and someone took my legs away. It was a definite penalty.

“But the ref didn’t have the best of games so I was still very surprised he gave it.”

McCall was dismissed for encroaching on the pitch to protest about a foul given against Luke O’Brien that led to Luton’s second goal.

The City boss, who watched the rest of the match from an empty hospitality box, admitted: “I might not have learned how to shoot, pass or head as a player but one thing I could do was tackle and that’s the best one made this season.

“Slide tackling is a dying art and anyone who has played the game could see that it was a beautiful challenge.

“I’ve never been as high then as low and as high again in 90 minutes of life. But I’m so proud of my players for coming back like that.”

Skipper Graeme Lee felt that McCall’s departure provided an extra spur for City to hit back.

He said: “The gaffer is as passionate as the players and we felt everything was going against us.

“He was still lifting us at half-time and it shows we’ve got the strong characters to bring things back. We’re all in it together and the belief is there.

“I thought it was brilliant how Baz kept calm for the penalty. He was lining it up while everyone was having a tussle behind him.”