Leyton Orient assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler insists his side knows what to expect as they travel to Northampton tomorrow afternoon. The O’s still sit top of the table after Jay Simpson secured a draw at home to Wycombe Wanderers last weekend. Hessenthaler stated to leytonorient.com “it is not going to be easy, we still sit top of the table and that’s an extra bit of pressure on ourselves but we have to go there and compete. Being at the top everybody wants to shoot us down”.
Orient assistant manager thought that on reflection a draw last weekend was a fair result but understands the threat that the Orient can face tomorrow at Sixfields. Hessenthaler added “They had a fantastic win at Morecambe, obviously we had them watched and they are very strong going forward. They have a fantastic manager and are very organised”.
Despite no win in their last 4, Hessenthaler insists their is no need to worry and “lots of teams will beat each other, it is important to take points from teams around us”. The O’s were thankful for Jay Simpson as Orient’s leading scorer notched his sixth of the campaign to keep his side unbeaten at home. Hessenthaler was full of admiration for his forward “He is terrific, I watch him every day in training, he is going to miss chances but also going to create them, he is a very clever player. In my opinion he is too good for League 2 which is pleasing we have got him ”
O’s midfielder Lloyd James was also full of praise for his teammate, speaking to leytonorient.com, James stated “Jay’s in superb form at the minute and I don’t think there are many better in the league at the minute; he is doing fantastic”. James has seen more competition for places since Jack Payne’s arrival in August and is finding it difficult to hold down a regular spot in midfield.
James is aware that the trip to Northampton is another tough game but is aware that “every game in the league is tough, this is going to be even more physical. The league is more physical but we have started well and we need to continue to do that”.
The O’s are without a win in September and in 4 games in all competitions but two draws against two tough sides has seen the East London side continue to tick over. James added when speaking to leytonorient.com “As a team we are doing well and it is still good to be top of the table but we need to start turning the draws into wins and I am sure they will come”.
Northampton go into to tomorrow’s clash after back to back league wins over Morecambe and Exeter. Cobbler’s manager Chris Wilder stated to http://www.ntfc.co.uk “The last 2 games have been really encouraging for myself and the staff about the way we have gone about our business. We want to kick on into the top group now”
Northampton secured an impressive 4-2 win away at Morecambe last weekend and Lawson D’Ath even thought his side could have scored more. Speaking post match to http://www.ntfc.co.uk, he stated “today we could have scored 7 or 8 goals, that’s a lot I know but it’s the truth. It is disappointing in a way but at least we scored 4″.
Both D’Ath and Wilder were full of praise of midfielder Nicky Adams and the impact he had at the Globe Arena. Adams joined the Cobblers in the summer and D’Ath thinks that things are starting to click going forward. D’Ath added “Nicky has come in, he plays a different way, I have had to adapt to that but now it is showing with his assists so everyone realises how he play now”.
- Adams did have a spell on loan at Leyton Orient back in 2010 and O’s fans will know the quality that the former Leicester man has in his game
Despite the win Wilder has urged his side to be more consistent, speaking ahead of tomorrow’s game to http://www.ntfc.co.uk, he added “Lawson and Adams had their best games so far this season so we are firing but we got to make sure we show that consistency and if we do we will create chances and cause problems”. But despite scoring, Wilder knows his side “need to tighten up, we need to get both ends of the pitch right to be successful”.
Wilder is expecting another good crowd at Sixfields with the league leaders visiting and the former Oxford manager is hoping more of the same from his supporters. “I expect the crowd to get behind us, the supporters understand the help they give us especially after the Oxford game. What great atmosphere hopefully we can get that on the pitch and we can be like the last 2 on the pitch”.
Despite Northampton facing the league’s top side, Wilder is hoping his side make it 3 wins on the bounce but is aware of threat that the East London side possess. Wildee stated “Orient have started the season on fire and got off to a great start but it is up to us to dent their promotion charge and enhance our form and points tally”. He added “They have kept some quality players and added well, they are one of the favourites to go up and rightfully so”
Even though Orient are without a win in 4, Wilder does not expect Ian Hendon’s side to sit behind the ball tomorrow “I don’t expect them to come and sit back, I believe they will come and want to gain 3 points, Ian will believe they are good enough and have the players to go anywhere and win. 3 points will be important to both clubs on Saturday”.
Hendon’s men have struggled in recent weeks to break down resolute sides in Cambridge and Wycombe with the diamond formation a topic of conversation. However with Wilder stating to http://www.ntfc.co.uk “we will be looking to get on the front foot and take confidence from the last 2 games. We need to get after the opposition, we will certainly do that, being at home we need to start on the front foot. The hand break is off and we have nothing to lose”
It maybe music to the ears of Ian Hendon who will feel that his side are better on the break with sides coming at them so that they can exploit the space left behind. In the diamond formation, the width needs to come from the full backs but in recent weeks, Orient have played very narrow.
However Hendon has stated that his side can play more than one formation but is aware that teams are matching them up. Gareth Ainsworth purposely played Marcus Bean in a deeper midfield position to combat Dean Cox’s impact but with space looking to be opened up tomorrow, Orient could have more joy in attack
Northampton are set to include Marc Richards, Joel Byrom and Rod McDonald who have overcome slight knocks. However Ricky Holmes, Zander Diamond, Evan Horwood and Brendan Molney all remain unavailable.
Orient midfielder Bradley Pritchard is rated touch and go after missing the draw with Wycombe last weekend while Ollie Palmer is pushing for a starting berth after impressing from the bench last week.
Head to Head – Northampton 29, Draw 20, Leyton Orient 28
Last Meeting – 11/11/2014 – Leyton Orient 2-0 Northampton – JPT
- Orient last won at Sixfields in 2012 (3-0 in JPT) and their last league win came in 2006
- Northampton last won at home in 2008 in a 2-0 win
- Northampton have scored first in their last 5 games – Winning 3, drawing 1 and losing 1
- Northampton home record this season – P6, W4, D0, L2
- Orient have failed to keep a clean sheet away from home this season
- Without a clean sheet in last 10 away games in all competitions with last clean sheet back in April
- Orient have conceded first in last 4 games in all competitions (Losing 2 and drawing 2)
Prediction – Northampton 1-3 Leyton Orient
With Wilder commenting his side trying to get on the front foot tomorrow, I feel this will play into Orient’s hands with them exploiting the gaps left. Teams have been content in recent weeks to sit back and match Orient up which I feel Wilder will do to a certain extent but will be more attacking. With space left, I think Orient will have too much quality in the end.
Nicky Adams will grab an assist for the Cobblers but Simpson, Palmer and Cox will net for the O’s