01 November 2015

Leyton Orient 0 Accrington Stanley 1, 31/10/15

A game in which... the entire Orient team scooped out their own brains with a spoon and placed candles inside their empty skulls in an apparent attempt to give Accrington a Halloween scare. It didn't work: the visitors needed no tricks and treated themselves to the easiest three points they're likely to get all season.

With ghastly defending, horrific attacking and an eerie absence of tactics, this was a bloodcurdling performance from Ian Hendon's team. Yes, the league table says we're still in the play-off places, but 11 points in the last 11 games paints a truer picture of the scale of our gruesome predicament.

Jump off your seat moment... Orient had one clear-cut chance in the entire game. One. Tragically that chance fell to Connor Essam, who would likely not score a goal were he to play football infinitely in a time-space continuum. Now, I'm not saying Essam has a head like a 50p piece, because that would be a hideous slur on a 50p piece, which can theoretically only spin a ball off in one of seven random directions. But there really is little point in the defender coming up for corners if – like today – he can't convert into an open net from two yards.

Essam and Baudry 
Give that man a medal... Dean Cox had to spend only another pointless 30 minutes or so on Ian Hendon's naughty step before the manager introduced him to the pitch, albeit bizarrely in place of the one player – John Marquis – who'd looked vaguely effective in the opening salvos of the game. And, God knows, once there the winger tried his little heart out, but must have felt like he'd arrived late at a Halloween party at which all his friends were taking their zombie costumes a bit too literally.

Taxi for... "Bradley Pritchard is a central midfielder and that's where he'll play," lied Ian Hendon at the start of the season before repeatedly sticking the former Charlton man out on the right where – as numerous former Orient managers have discovered and yet bizarrely ignored – he is utterly ineffective. The gaffer has now tried 4,567 different formations in his 18 games in charge, all of which contain both Pritchard and his footballing doppelgänger Sammy Moore in one guise or another. Unless Hendon knows of some ancient curse that says the hounds of hell will be unleashed on Brisbane Road should the pair ever be separated, it might be an idea to try dropping one of them.

In the dug out... Now, I am not suggesting that Ian Hendon should be sacked. (Though Becchetti pulled the trigger on Russell Slade for a run of results far less damaging than the current one.) But it would be helpful if the manager could give fans the slightest sense that he actually knows what he's doing rather than reverting to Liverani-esque behaviour such as inexplicably dropping star performers; publicly blaming his players in post-match press conferences; and double training sessions. What next: "Big house in the box"? The return of Gianvito Plasmati?

Meanwhile on Facebook... It's half-time and you're enjoying a Brisbane Road burger (ok, stay with me on this, you're going to have to use a bit of imagination). You need a little sit down, and where better to do it than the opposition dug out, as the fan in this video proves. Minutes later a pair of ever-vigilant stewards intervene, although should the interloper have chosen the home dug out they probably wouldn't have bothered. Tactically he may have done a better job than Ian Hendon in the second half...

28 comments:

  1. Pritchard was the worse of a very bad bunch (excluding Cox and maybe Palmer). He can't cross a ball, pass a ball forward or shoot on target. When he gets the ball he passes it as quick as he can, then darts on a little run to nowhere effective. When the ball bobbled over his foot in the first two minutes and went for a throw in it summed him up

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  2. Did you not see Chicksen? He was abysmal (well more abysmal than the rest anyway!).

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    1. There is some debate over who was the most abysmal in an abysmal team performance. Essam, Baudry and Pritchard all up there. James was appalling when he came on. Chicksen also shit, agreed.

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