Leyton Orient assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler has seen his side take stock after their first defeat in the league last weekend at Exeter. The O’s are the early pace setters in League 2 after relegation last term and are keen to get back to winning ways at Cambridge tomorrow. Hessenthaler spoke to leytonorient.com today stating “we can’t let our last result affect us, we have to get a result that gets us back on track”.
The O’s were the only side with a 100% record in the football league before their visit to St James Park after winning their first 5 fixtures but Hessenthaler highlighted “the stats showed we had a lot of the ball but in the final 3rd we didn’t show enough quality and defensively made some individual errors at the wrong times”. The assistant boss added “You have to take stock, if after 6 games someone had given us top spot, we would have certainly taken it”.
O’s skipper Mathieu Baudry insists that if his side knew the defeat was going to come but “we have to react well after a setback and see what we are made off”. Baudry admitted a mistake for the first Exeter penalty at the weekend that his team mates should “take this as a wake up call, in this league if you do a bit less you will get punished”
Ian Hendon was named manager of the month for August prior to defeat at Exeter and stated to leytonorient.com that “the manager of the month curse struck big time, I blame myself for that today but listen we have got to bounce back and show character and what we are about” Hendon praised the whole club after his award but highlights that “it is my job to keep them up, we had a fantastic run of 5 games, we have good players and are a good side but came unstuck today. My job is to pick them up”
The O’s face a tricky trip to the Abbey Stadium tomorrow to face Cambridge United, Baudry illustrates that his team-mates “need to use what happened and come back stronger next week”. Hessenthaler knows that despite Cambridge’s start they are a threat “they are a very strong team and have a very good manager. They will be organised, Richard Money knows the game and been in it a long time, it’s not going to be easy”.
- Orient kept 3 clean sheets at home but failed to keep a clean sheet in their 5 away games
Speaking before tomorrow’s trip he added “There are a strong side, 2 big centre backs, Leon Legge is a real threat from set plays and they will be well organised and hard to break down”. Orient struggled to breakdown an Exeter side who looked to sit back and prevent the O’s from creating chances last weekend but Hessenthaler states that “we have to go there and worry about ourselves, making sure that we start right and get what we are looking for”.
Cambridge sit in 12th place after picking up 8 points from their opening 6 games of the league season. The U’s come into tomorrow’s games on the back of a 3-1 defeat to Luton Town last weekend but that is far from the story of the game. Harison Dunk was dismissed for a second yellow card in the second half which completed changed the game and Money knows that his side “played well, there was a clear interaction when walking off the pitch we deserved a lot more but were let down by one person”
Cambridge picked up 7 points from their first three games but have since seen their form decline losing their next three games at home in all competitions. Money knows the importance of the Abbey “home form is important every season, in every year, we haven’t started great at home and didn’t finish well last season. We need to get it together and get ourselves going pretty quick. We don’t want to full behind the group”
- Cambridge have only won 2 of their previous 14 league matches at home – losing 9 of them
Cambridge have had a problem start to their league campaign with injuries playing a integral role to that. Money spoke to cambridge-united.co.uk stating “we saw we had a tough run of home fixtures and obviously you want to be at full strength after pre -season but we clearly haven’t been”. After defeat to Luton last weekend Money added “I’m not sure how much we can read into these results at the minutes as we are yet to be up to full speed”.
Money insisted that despite defeat there were positive to take from the game but did highlight that “the group feel they are not quite there yet, we are looking for soemthing to give us momentum and certainly a victory would have done that”. But a boost for the U’s could be the return to fitness of Barry Corr, the former Southend striker netted 5 times in his opening 3 games for Cambridge but injury has prevented his continuation. Corr understands the test that awaits his side tomorrow “Orient are a really good side, they have got really good players, we look forward to it, it will be a really difficult game but we will all be up for it”.
Corr spoke to cambridge-united.co.uk earlier in the week speaking on how disappointed he was on his injury but know that when the side is fit they should play well. “We are only going to get better, when everybody is fit and firing we have a very good team”. Corr added “our performances have been maybe a little inconsistent but as time goes by and we get more used to each other we should get better and better”.
Despite tomorrow’s visitors losing their unbeaten record, Money is aware of the back lash that could await them tomorrow “they were always going to get beat, not sure if it is a silver lining for us or not, it will certainly put them on their metal as they won’t want a repeat of last week”. Money added “It makes life more difficult for us, they have started well, they kept enough of group to have quality in the division and added well, they will expect to come here and win”
Cambridge are without the injured Ryan Donaldson who remains sidelined alongside Keith Keane and Jeff Hughes. Barry Corr could keep his place but still remains a doubt with former O’s defender Elliott Omosuzi who returned to training this week. Harison Dunk is suspended after his red card last week.
Orient could welcome back goalkeeper Alex Ciask who missed Orient’s last 2 fixtures after being away with Austraila on International duty. Fraser Shaw could return at left back in place of Alan Dunne while Blair Turgott will continue to push for a start.
Head to Head – Cambridge 17, Draw 12, Leyton Orient 12
Last Meeting – 12/03/05 – Leyton Orient 1-1 Cambridge United
- Orient are unbeaten on their last 3 visits to the Abbey – 2 wins and a draw
- But prior to those 3 games, Orient did lose the previous 5
Prediction – Cambridge 1-2 Leyton Orient
There will be a reaction from Ian Hendon’s side after a heavy defeat last weekend. With the return of Alex Ciask the defense should look more assured. Cambridge are without key wingers Ryan Donaldson and Harison Dunk who are both unavailable and are a big miss for the home side.
The U’s are dangerous from set pieces with Leon Legge a real threat which Orient should no all about after he scored twice for Gillingham against Orient last season. The O’s should have too much quality Cambridge but it could see a change of formation from Hendon who saw his side struggle to break down Exeter last weekend.