The highlight of Leyton Orient’s 1-0 home reversal to Coventry City on Saturday was the one lonely Coventry fan that turned up dressed as Kermit the Frog while nobody else in the away end seemed to get the memo that it was fancy dress. Meanwhile Orient fans endured another home farce of eleven Muppets trying to play football.
The game itself was decided by an awful mistake. Carl Baker’s tame long-range effort was spilled horribly by Allsop and in-form striker David McGoldrick tapped home after rounding the prone keeper. It was Allsop’s second spill after gifting Colchester their second goal in the 2-0 home defeat four days earlier, from an otherwise excellent keeper, and highlighted just how low on confidence the team is at the moment.
Orient did create chances, however, but as has been the problem this season, nobody can finish them off. Martin Rowlands ‘shot from outside the box was deflected over the bar and David Mooney’s low cross slipped across the area only for Dean Cox to slice wildly over after hacking at the ball from nine yards out while unmarked.
Coventry also had opportunities, almost all of which came from mistakes. After letting the ball run under his foot, Ben Chorley tried to recover his mistake by trying to Lionel Messi his way out trouble with his back to goal, which resulted in McGoldrick picking his pocket but just squeezing his shot wide. Shortly before half time, Gary McSheffrey found himself clear of the Orient defence, but Allsop pulled off a good save to deny the Coventry veteran.
Scott Wagstaff saw his back header almost loop over Joe Murphy, but the Coventry keeper palmed the ball to Mooney who shot high and wide over the bar when he should have scored. Mooney worked hard all day, and while his finishing remains abysmal, he put in considerable effort all game.
Second half saw much of the same, with little cohesion or purpose to Orient’s play and besides Moses Odubajo and Mooney, a lack of penetration. Rowlands slipped and only a great block from Chorley stopped a second, while Wagstaff headed just wide from Cox at the other end. Lee Cook and Michael Symes came on for Cox and Brunt respectively, but failed to change things sufficiently. With mere seconds left, the home crowd thought Mooney had equalised as he took a high ball down well by the penalty spot, but rolled his shot inches wide.
A mixture of bad luck, low confidence and poor quality again saw the Os defeated as I left still trying to work out why Slade played the lively and talented Odubajo at right back all game with McSweeney on the bench. Slade’s tactics are giving the Os fans a nasty case of ‘Groundhog Day’ after last season’s debacle and things are not looking much better this season. Occupying nineteenth place in League One with nine defeats in fifteen games tells its own story, while Russell Slade’s insistence that fans need to “keep believing” and that they will “work harder” is wearing thin with Os fans. With potential banana skin Gloucester away in the FA Cup, Slade is well and truly on the brink.
Written by Andy Brown, We Are Going Up’s Leyton Orient Blogger