Leyton Orient midfielder Jobi McAnuff is hoping his side can get back to back winning ways tomorrow as they host Hartlepool United. The O’s take on Pool in the first meeting between the two sides since they both were relegated from the Football League last season.
- Sit 9th on 16 points
- Sit three points off top and a point off the playoffs
Orient have lost back to back games for the first time this season with McAnuff keen “to put the last two results right”. After a 2-0 away defeat to Boreham Wood last Saturday, Orient lost 3-0 at home to FC Halifax on Tuesday night. McAnuff stated to leytonorient.com earlier today “there is a real determination to put to put it right”
- League Record – P10 W5 D1 L4 F14 A16
- Form in last six – W3 D1 L2 F8 A7
- Home Record – P5 W3 D1 L1 F10 A6
- Orient have won five of the last seven home games
Adam Morgan, Tom Denton and Matt Kosylo all struck to inflict Orient’s first home defeat of the season. Looking to bounce back, McAnuff acknowledges that it is about the whole team “it was one of those nights, it is about us doing our jobs. We are all on the pitch to do a job whether it be scoring, creating or keeping the ball out; collectively we didn’t do our jobs well enough”.
- Have not lost back to back home games since March and April 2017
- Last failed to score in three consecutive game March and April 2017
Head coach Steve Davis admitted after the game that it was a tale of both boxes and his side needed to be better at both ends of the pitch. Speaking to leytonorient.com “we are all hoping to be more clinical, the players know they can be. I would be more concerned if we weren’t creating chances. Goals change games”. Davis highlighted a key message for his players “we have to be tighter and better defensively and have to put our chances away”.
- Kept three clean sheets – only one at home
- Kept one clean sheet in the last 17 home games – Maidstone 2-0, 12/08/17
- Kept just three clean sheets in last 28 home games
- Have conceded the most goals in the top half of the league
- Only Torquay, Guiseley, Solihull and Fylde have conceded more in the National League
Orient sat second in the table just over a week ago with Davis admitting he knows how quickly teams can change positions in the National League. With ten games gone, the former Crewe man stated “we would have taken the start at the beginning of the season, it seems to be a very tough league. Anybody can beat anyone if they are not on it, it shows in this league how key winning back to back matches can be”.
- Scored 10/14 goals in the second half
- 70% of Orient’s home goals have been scored in second half
Tomorrow’s clash with Hartlepool will be the second time the BT Sport cameras have shown at Orient game after their 2-0 defeat to Sutton United on the opening day. Despite a dodgy opening run of games Davis admitted that Hartlepool have “turned it around after a difficult start. They found it tough settling into the league and the style of play. They are still acclimatising just like we are” He added “it can take a little while to adjust and tomorrow will be a intriguing game with two teams that came down”.
- Scored two or more in four of their last seven home games
After being described by Davis as “ having his best games in the last two games” McAnuff sees tomorrow’s game as a great opportunity to pick up a win. Speaking to leytonorient.com “they are another team like ourselves who feel that they should be in the Football League. They have had a difficult start and taken time to adjust to this level. The game is a perfect chance to get back on track, hopefully it will be a good game for us”.
- Failed to score in three games this season
Hartlepool arrive in Leyton on the back of a four match unbeaten run, with their most recent result being a 0-0 draw away at Wrexham on Tuesday night. Craig Harrison men found life difficult early on in the National League but are now finding their feet and appear on the up.
- Sit 17th on 12 points
- League Record – P10 W3 D3 L4 F8 A10
- Won three of their last four games
Manager Craig Harrison was pleased with his side performance on Tuesday night, which continued their unbeaten run. Speaking to hartlepoolunited.com “we were comfortable, we passed the ball well, we worked hard and defended well”. He added “we spoke about building momentum and building a foundation and the least we were going to leave tonight with a clean sheet and thought from front to back, we were fantastic”.
- Kept three clean sheets this season – two away from home
- Kept all three in their last four games – after failing to get one in previous 15 games
- 0-0 draw with Wrexham was the first time Pool kept back to back clean sheets since March 2016 (1-0 vs Wimbledon, 2-0 Orient)
- Last kept three straight clean sheets – March 2016
Despite the draw, Harrison admitted that “ the lads are sitting there disappointed with a point after beating Dagenham three days ago”. Harrison felt his side could have snatched all three points if he side were more clinical in front of goal. Speaking to hartlepoolmail.com “when we do get the opportunities we have to take them because the openings don’t always come along very often”.
- Scored six of their 10 goals in the first half – all at home
- Four of them have been between minutes 31-45
- Only Maidstone and Hartlepool have failed to score in the first half away from home
Defender Michael Woods admitted that the Pools change of fortune came about from going back to basics. After four defeats in the first six games, Woods highlighted that their defeat to AFC Fylde was the last straw. Speaking to hartlepoolmail.com “after the result, the gaffer said we were going back to the drawing board and strip it back. Forget the ball, get the off the ball stuff right and gives us a base to go from. One goal conceded in the last four has showed that”
- Form – P4 W3 D1 L0 F5 A1
- Before Fylde P6 W0 D2 L4
Woods highlighted that it isn’t about individuals but about the whole team “we’ve gone back to basics, not just at the back. It is about the whole 11, winning second balls and just making sure we are the hardest working team in the division”. However Woods wants to continue the run tomorrow at Orient, “the last four games have been a base but will count for nothing if we don’t follow it on. We have learnt now what it takes to win games at this level”.
- Away Record – P5 W1 D2 L2 F3 A5
- Unbeaten in their last two away games – 0-0 vs Wrexham, 1-0 W vs Guisely
- Not gone three games unbeaten away since September and October 2016
- Only won two away games since 1st October 2016
- Record – P22 W2 D5 L15
The two sides met back in April in a clash at the bottom of League Two with Harrison highlighting to hartlepoolunited.com “some of the lads still talk about it and say they didn’t well and we should have done better – it is a chance to right some wrongs”. A key for Harrison is ensuring that “we got there and be positive, we need to stamp our authority and style on the game” .
- Only led for 41 minutes away from home this season
Despite their change of fortune in results, Harrison urged his players to “get the basics right again, being hard to beat is something that has come naturally to players after the last four games”. The league is very tight with four points separating top and 14th place, “we want to keep our run going, a week ago Dagenham came to our place top and now they’re eighth so our job is to find week with a positive result and see where it takes us” Harrison.
Defender George Elokobi and midfielder Charlie Lee will be both missing through injury. Winger James Dayton is expected to return following a hamstring injury while defender Josh Coulson is rated 50/50 by Steve Davis.
Hartlepool look set to be without Connor Simpson with a knee injury while Scott Harrison and Blair Adams are also out. Luke George and Jack Cassidy are out with hamstring and foot injuries.
Head to Head – Leyton Orient 20, Draw 9, Hartlepool United 19
Last meeting – 17/04/17 – Leyton Orient 2-1 Hartlepool United
- Orient completed the league double over Hartlepool last season (2-1 + 3-1)
- Hartlepool last beat at Orient, 2-0 at Brisbane Road – 28/03/16
- Orient have only lost one of their five meetings – W3 D1 L1
- Orient have scored in nine of the last ten meetings – last failed to score 28/03/16
- Orient have not beaten Hartlepool three times in a row since 91/92
- There have been three or more goals in five of the last seven meetings
- Not been a 0-0 since 09/01/1993
Prediction – Leyton Orient 1-1 Hartlepool