TASTE OF THE TERRACE: Another nightmare for the O’s

Crawley Town fan Geoff Thornton gives his views in his new column SUS-150216-163154002
Crawley Town fan Geoff Thornton gives his views in his new column SUS-150216-163154002

For Orient supporters it must seem like a recurring nightmare as they slumped to their sixth defeat in seven matches against Crawley Town.

The Reds usually play well against them but crucially seem to achieve more, rather than the usual less, than their play had merited.

Roarie Deacon took his goal well while Mitch Hancox’s speculative effort deserved to be a match winner.”

Crawley Town season ticket holder Geoff Thornton

Not that this win was undeserved but it made a change for the lads to gain proper reward for their efforts.

The win was overdue following the spirited showing at Plymouth that was undone by a lapse of concentration at the death and the plucky effort against Southend United in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.

I thought that we were short changed against the Shrimpers. They deserved to win by virtue of their superior finishing but a single goal in extra-time might have better reflected the balance of play.

We must not get carried away on the strength of one win, even against one of the promotion favourites.

Roarie Deacon took his goal well while Mitch Hancox’s speculative effort deserved to be a match-winner.

If Matt Harrold’s excellent header had not been turned aside at full stretch by Alex Cisak, Crawley would have been 4-1 up.

But instead we all had to endure a nervous closing quarter hour. Even that might have been eased but Cisak pulled off another great save to deny Shamir Fenelon.

That closing period evidenced the side’s shortcomings. We must press harder in the middle of the park.

Jimmy Smith was as tigerish as he had been against Southend but too many others backed off and failed to put in a challenge.

This led to Orient’s comical opening goal. I always thought coaches advocated defending from the front but too often we seem afraid to tackle.

Although Orient did not look a potent attacking force Jay Simpson’s second goal simply reiterated Reds’ biggest defensive problem. We never mark closely enough. It’s a schoolboy failing but the necessary discipline can be coached so we must hope it will be.

There has also been a shortfall in attacking enterprise with too few goal attempts but this match amply demonstrated what has been missing.

It was good to see the rescinding of a couple of the heavy-handed exclusion orders but it is the displays on the field that will bring back the missing fans. With the contribution at the turnstiles of 800-odd visiting supporters plus three invaluable points we really should say to Leyton Orient “Thank you for coming.”