Writer: Kid Sampson
Date:Monday November 23 2009
Orient grabbed a crucial and deserved victory against relegation scrap rivals Tranmere in the clubs' third meeting in as many weeks. Whilst the O's crashed out of the FA Cup to the team from the Wirral in midweek, victory in the corresponding League game was always going to be a priority. A brace from veteran striker Scott McGleish proved just enough to take the spoils.
I've been highly critical of Orient in recent weeks (and rightly so, I reckon), but this performance was better. Much better. At times it was even almost good! The first goal in particular was a flowing move of real quality: Glenn Morris threw the ball out to release Andros Townsend on the counter-attack; the young Spurs winger beat his man before firing a pass inside to Ryan Jarvis. The forward controlled the ball beautifully, turning his man in one fluid movement, and releasing Scott McGleish in behind the static defence. The 35 year old front man finished with aplomb, striking the ball low inside the near post from 14 yards.
It was no less than the home side deserved after a dominant early performance had seen a good tempo set, and a couple of decent half chances created. The return of Townsend and Luke Summerfield (both of whom had been refused permission to play in the FA Cup encounters) added the extra bit of quality needed to unlock Tranmere's rearguard, and they combined early on with Summerfield firing Townsend's pass wide on 10 minutes. Jason Demetriou had made way - no doubt as punishment for his midweek petulance - and it was a decision that reaped dividends as Andros took his opposite number apart in the opening half hour.
Townsend was again involved on 20 minutes, as he released Scott McGleish through on goal, only to see the veteran smash the ball wide when better options were available across goal. However, despite the bright start, Orient fell back into the usual bad habits of going ahead and then allowing their opponents to dictate play.
Tranmere, until the goal content with similar tactics to Tuesday (i.e. sit 10 behind the ball and lump it), decided to wake up and start passing to each other. They were level within five minutes, Chris Curran smashing home after Paul McLaren's dipping shot had only been parried by Glenn Morris. Though the keeper should probably have done better with the initial effort, the way the O's defence just stood and watched as two Tranmere forwards followed the ball in was inexcusable.
There were chances at both ends before the break, with both Chris Shuker and Jon Welsh failing to test Morris with attempts, whilst Ryan Jarvis spurned a golden opportunity to give the hosts a half time lead. Played in by strike partner McGleish, Jarvis was clean through on Luke Daniels. However, despite the clear shooting chance presenting itself, Jarvis inexplicably chose to round Daniels instead and ended up somewhere near the corner flag.
The second half was a low-quality affair, with Orient just about edging it in general play, and - thankfully - in goals scored. With Andros Townsend having a quiet 20 minutes or so, the game was deviod of pace and real attacking intent. Indeed, the first serious attempt of the half turned out to be the winner, as Scott McGleish was left unmarked on the edge of the six-yard box and flicked home Sean Thornton's excellent cross. As the Orient players mobbed McGleish, Thornton trotted over to the away fans and pointed out exactly which direction Rovers are exiting this League from. Having suffered dog's abuse all afternoon from the Tranmere faithful it was sweet retribution for the Orient midfielder.
Though Tranmere strove for an equaliser, they utterly failed to trouble Morris (and bringing on Michael Ricketts isn't the solution to anything. Well, except perhaps a surplus of Big Macs). It was Orient who always looked the more likely to sew the game up with a third, as Luke Summerfield dragged a shot wide with ten to play, and then curled a sitter over the bar in injury time.
Thankfully no damage was done by those two misses (though we haven't scored three goals at home since Jabo's last game as an Orient player, fact fans) and there was a feeling of palpable relief around the ground at the final whistle. After three awful games of football between the two sides, honours were even. It hadn't been particularly pretty and it hadn't been entirely convincing, but the O's picked up the result when it mattered most - the magic of the Cup? Pah, it's all about the magic of survival in this Southern-domninated division. All we've got to do now is string two results in a row together, and we'll be pootling along in mid-table. Who have we got next again...?
Date:Monday November 23 2009
Orient To Play Bradford Next Season (Saturday May 18 2013)
Vincelot Misses Out On Player Of The Month (Friday May 17 2013)
Slade - Getting Closer With Mooney & Vincelot (Thursday May 16 2013)
Transfer Rumour - Ricky Holmes (Thursday May 16 2013)
Transfer Rumour - Raffaele De Vita (Wednesday May 15 2013)
Vincelot Nominated For Player Of The Month (Wednesday May 15 2013)
Orient Continue Judicial Review (Tuesday May 14 2013)
Vital Orient Player Of The Season - Results (Tuesday May 14 2013)
Word On The Tweet - O's Rumour Mill (Monday May 13 2013)
Lee - My Heart Has Always Been With The Club (Monday May 13 2013)
|Leyton Orient||2||-||0||MK Dons|
|5. Sheff Utd||46||19||18||9||14||75|
|7. Leyton Orient||46||21||8||17||7||71|
|8. MK Dons||46||19||13||14||17||70|
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