Writer: Jenny K
Date:Saturday March 26 2011
Sat 26th March/13:00
A fatal mixture of inept refereeing and sloppy defending lead Orient to the wrong side of an embarrassing 5-1 defeat at home to Yeovil on Saturday afternoon.
The man supposedly in charge, Geoff Eltringham, had a hand in many of the games key decisions, including a very harsh red card for Matt Spring and a wrongful penalty decision against Stephen Dawson.
The game started quite well for the O's, pushing the ball around nicely as we started the brighter side.
But in a similar fashion to Tuesday evening, the opposition took the lead with an early goal. This time it was Yeovil's Shaun MacDonald, who smashed home a beautiful 30-yard strike that left Jamie Jones with no chance. This was one of the only things that we couldn't blame the ref for as it was a cracking strike from the midfielder.
But Mr Eltringham had a big hand in the next decision of the game. In the 14th minute, with Orient behind but still in the game, he chose to send off Matt Spring for a 50/50 challenge with Yeovil's Andrew Welsh. It was a ridiculous decision as both players went in for the challenge, the only difference being that Welsh stayed down a bit longer.
Spring's sending off put us on the back-foot immediately as Springy shaped holes started appearing all over the midfield as the pairing of Stephen Dawson and Tommy Carroll struggled to cope. Yeovil were moving between our players with far too much ease.
This proved to be the case for Yeovil's second goal. MacDonald found too much space in the right channel and easily smashed past Jones at the near post.
Orient rarely threatened in attack despite the efforts of Jonathan Tehoue. Slade's decision to play Tehoue from the start again may have raised a few eyebrows but the striker's first-half contribution was excellent. He held up the ball well, won headers and really tried to build O's attacks.
Unfortunately any glimmers of hope for Tehoue and Orient were completely destroyed by Eltringham again, this time two minutes before the break. The referee decided that Dawson had blocked MacDonald's cross with his arm on the edge of the penalty area and pointed to the spot. It would have been laughable if we weren't already two nil down by this point.
MacDonald converted the kick and Dawson limped off with an injury picked up minutes earlier. Everything was going wrong for Orient and the referee's decisions were having a domino effect on our bad day, though by this stage it felt like the referee had taken a sledge-hammer to our set of dominos.
At half-time Slade rightly changed the formation, bringing off Carroll for Forbes and moving Omozusi and Crowe further up the wings as attacking wing-backs with three at the back.
At 3-0 down it looked unlikely that we would make a comeback and two minutes after the break, it looked impossible. Welsh slotted home Yeovil's fourth after a looping cross exposed gaps in the O's defending.
Despite it looking like we had a formidable pairing akin to the Mitchell brothers at the back (in Barrett and Chorley), our defending was often sloppy.
Chorley looked out of the game throughout the 90 minutes after his comeback from injury (possibly a game too early on today's showing) and I worry about communication issues when it comes to Barrett. The arrival of Terrell Forbes seemed to sure up our backline a bit after the break.
We at least got something to cheer about after 70 minutes when Dean Cox produced a neat finish after strike pairing Jonathan Téhoué and Scott McGleish combined to set up the midfielder.
Yeovil had the final word though when Dean Bowditch rolled past Jones after some lazy Orient defending almost guided his path to goal.
It really was a day to forgot for everyone connected to Orient and the fact that I was looking forward to going home and watching the second-half of Wales vs England by the hour mark sums up today's game.
There was too many poor performances from O's players across the pitch but it is important to add that our ten men rarely had a chance against the twelve that turned up for Yeovil.
We are lucky that this slump (of one point from three games) hasn't cost us a league position.
With five points and a game in hand on Bournemouth in 6th, we still have a chance in the play-off race though we (with the help of today's officials) are not making it easy for ourselves.
Leyton Orient: Jones; Omozusi, Chorley, Barrett, Daniels; Spring; Dawson (Smith 42), Carroll (Forbes 46), Cox; Téhoué (Revell 72), McGleish
Yeovil: Henderson; Alcock, Huntington, Virgo, Ehmer; MacDonald, Wotton (Russell 87), Welsh; Obika, Bowditch (Upson 89), Johnson (Williams 69)
Date:Saturday March 26 2011
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