24 August 2013

Leyton Orient 2 Crewe Alexandra 0, 24/8/13

Moses Odubajo scores for Orient
A game which… was played in such waterlogged conditions that Orient might have been better off bringing
their Speedos, snorkels and a pair of baby armbands for Dean Cox. Still, of the two teams Orient adapted much better resulting in a first half so one-sided it resembled a swimming race between Michael Phelps and a lump of concrete.

Yes, a two-goal lead was the least the home side deserved for some intoxicating attacking play from Cox, Odubajo, Lisbie and Mooney. Crewe – a decent side, make no mistake – came back hard in the second half but the Os bravely weathered the storm to record a fifth straight victory and leave them top of the League One table. Astonishing, really.

Moment of magic… If there’s anyone you want to see grabbing the ball when Orient are awarded a penalty, it’s not David Mooney. Still, it’s a measure of the Irishman’s confidence this season that – after Kevin Lisbie stroked wide from the spot just minutes earlier – he stepped up to the plate and slotted home from 12 yards.

Moment of madness… A solitary moment of dawdling by Scott Cuthbert (who was otherwise immense) in the second half that led to two Crewe players – don’t know which, so let’s call them both Dean Ashton – bearing down on goal. Not sure what was going through the Scot’s mind, but I’ll take a stab at: “Deep-fried Mars Bars and Braveheart on DVD tonight if we get through this one, lads.”

Top Gun… Helpfully Orient PA Philip Othen announces the man of the match towards the end of each game these days, saving me the trouble of trying to figure it out for myself. Today it was awarded to Moses Odubajo, which seems fair enough for a first half in which he repeatedly penetrated the Crewe defence like a German U-Boat attacking a flotilla of rubber ducks. I’d have given it to Jamie Jones though.

Little donkey… No bad performances from anyone in an Orient shirt. Indeed, the team was on fire today – or at least it would have been if it wasn't under three feet of water.

The management… “I’m getting a real buzz off the clean sheets,” said Russell Slade after the game, suggesting that the midweek nights alone in his Brisbane Road flat are pretty exciting on laundry day. But let’s take our hats off to a manager who pretty much everyone wanted sacked this time last year – Russell, we salute you.

View from the opposition… “Dominated Leyton Orient second half,” writes irate Crewe fan Tom Royle with predictable bias. “Wonder how much Russell Slade was paying the ref #fuming”

Tweet of the week... Only one candidate here: this photo by Os fan Adam Sampson from Stevenage last week, proving that there is food on offer at football grounds actually worse than the Labrador Pies and Scottish Border Collie Burgers available at Brisbane Road. Adam's tweet went viral - a similar reaction to that you'd expect from actually eating the cheesy chips - and made it into the national press. Stevenage FC denied the concoction was on sale at all in a dubious tweet full of dire cheese-based puns - demonstrating that when it comes to customer service, they don't give Edam. Sorry.

Orient by numbers… Four league wins out of four equals Orient’s best ever start to the season in 1910/11. “Nearly 430,000 people turned up to our fifth game,” recalled groundsman Billy Smith. “It would have been more, but it clashed with a particularly funny episode of the radio comedy ‘Vicar, Where’s Me Trousers?’”
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