14 September 2011

Leyton Orient 1 Bournemouth 3, 13/9/11

A game which... was something akin to watching a boxing match between Vladimir Klitschko and Justin Bieber, in which Bieber is forced to fight with one arm tied behind his back. Yep, Orient hardly need handicaps at the moment and given that we can't win with 11 players, we're not going to get three points with just 10. The focus of some of the post-match attention will be on the dubious penalty and sending off, but let's first at least credit the Orient players with a bit of spirit for vaguely attempting a fight back, while acknowledging that even with 11 on the pitch they mostly looked as threatening as a feather duster-wielding toddler.

Moment of class... Just the one really, Orient's goal, which was both initiated and finished by Dean Cox. The pocket-sized winger is still the Nicole Scherzinger in a team of underperforming Pussycat Dolls, but it would help if his colleagues occasionally backed him up with a bit of harmony.

Moment of madness... Russell Slade's rather defeatist decision to take off a striker when Orient went down to ten men with the score at 1-1. He might as well have thrown in a towel than send on Elliot Omozusi - probably about as effective.

Knight in shining armour... George Porter looks to have a bit of spark - start him next game, he can't exactly do any worse - but expecting him alone to get Orient out of trouble is a bit like asking a Boy Scout to single-handedly eradicate Third World debt simply because he'd once raised £150 on a sponsored walk.

Pantomime horse... David Mooney is just one letter of the alphabet away from being a Rooney, although on the evidence of tonight's totally ineffective performance he has more in common with Coleen than Wayne.

In the dug out... No call for Slade's head from the stands just yet, but the manager cut a disconsolate figure in the technical area and it can't be long (a loss to Oldham on Saturday?) before Hearn's seen enough.

A word on the opponents... Although in a similarly low league position, Bournemouth showed Orient that it is actually possible to move the ball around the pitch with some sort of purpose. Marc Pugh and Wesley Thomas were a particular handful, but the whole team showed commitment - particularly when racing up to surround the referee after Scott Cuthbert's late but not red card-worthy challenge.

Meanwhile, on Twitter... If you follow Jimmy Smith on Twitter you'll know that the midfielder's days generally consist of nothing more than "Training - bath - bedtime". Today, however, Jimmy showed that sometimes he mixes things up a bit with "Training - take photo of Coxy having haircut - bath - bedtime." Tiny's standing up in that picture, by the way.

Lesson for the day... We've tried to win with 11 players - that didn't work. We've tried to win with 10 players - that didn't work either. Next week let's try nine - either that or play both Marc Laird and Leon McSweeney in midfield, which is much the same thing.

And from the darker reaches of Freeview HD...


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