Writer: Jenny K
Date:Wednesday March 9 2011
Tues 8th March/19:45
Goals from Harry Kane and Jonathan Tehoue at Walsall lifted the O's up to 7th in the league one table, already reaching a healthy 50 points at the start of March.
Goals either side of half-time sealed the game for Orient, in a match where Walsall often looked the brighter side and more capable of scoring. But this is the sort of game that we needed to grind out a result, even when under pressure, if we are to grab a play-off place.
Slade named an unchanged side from Saturday's win over Notts County, Tottenham youngsters Tommy Carroll and Harry Kane keeping their places in the team. Elliot Omozusi continued at centre-back with Terrell Forbes with Ben Chorley still out.
Despite a few early chances it was Walsall who looked more like scoring. Julian Gray hit the post before Marc-Antoine Gbarssin's well struck volley hit the crossbar.
We were slightly lucky to stay in the contest but Orient's clinical finishing proved the difference, punishing Walsall for the first time as the break approached.
Dean Cox, who is continuing his fantastic record of assists (16 in the league, 19 in total), whipped in a cross and with the help of a deflection, the ball dropped nicely for Kane to head past Walsall keeper James Walker.
Orient were fortunate to go into half-time one nil up but made the game virtually safe 11 minutes into the second-half.
When it is not Cox delivering the telling cross it is normally Daniels and it was the left-back's low cross that Tehoue slotted home from close-range.
It was Tehoue's 10th goal of the season and all ten have come from the bench, a fact that answers any doubts over why he doesn't start games.
The fact that Kane and Tehoue both got the goals is a relief as the goals of McGleish and in particular Revell have dried up in recent weeks. Having goals across the team and squad is important with so many games coming up.
The match quietened down after Tehoue's strike, both teams coming close to adding another goal to the game though both keepers made sure there was little more to talk about in a productive evening for Orient.
Moving up to 7th is a fantastic achievement for Orient, as is reaching 50 points. At the same point last season we had a total of 38 points and were in the midst of a relegation battle.
The change in circumstances shows how much Orient have improved this season, though there is no doubt under Slade and with this group of players, they will want to push on and keep climbing up the table.
Closing the gap to the play-off spots will be hard, with an eight point difference between ourselves in 7th and MK Dons in 6th. Though we do have at least one game in hand on all the teams around us and a massive four games to make up compared to MK Dons.
Not letting the pressure get to us (as Slade said after the game, see below) is important but I think the focus that Slade also talks about can now realistically be grabbing a play-off spot, something that will hopefully inspire the players to more points in the next few weeks.
I would think the likes of Southampton, Peterborough and Huddersfield would claim a play-off spot but 7th is the place up for grabs and Orient are well in the hunt, the next opportunity to close the gap being Oldham at Brisbane Road this Saturday.
Walsall: Walker; Westlake, Lancashire, Butler, Williams; Taundry (Nicholls 57), Richards, Gbarssin, Gray; Macken, Ledesma (Byfield 67)
Leyton Orient: Jones; Whing, Omozusi, Forbes, Daniels; Spring; Dawson, Carroll (Chambers 70), Cox; Kane (McGleish 83), Revell (Tehoue 50)
Date:Wednesday March 9 2011
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New Away Kit Revealed (Monday June 17 2013)
O's Draw Coventry In League Cup (Monday June 17 2013)
Simply Orient - 2013/2014… Stick Or Twist? (Monday June 17 2013)
Vincelot Signs For Three Years (Friday June 14 2013)
Hearn - Slade Is A Very Good Manager (Thursday June 13 2013)
The Only Way Is Orient - You're Fired! (Thursday June 13 2013)
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|8. MK Dons||0||0||0||0||0||0|
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