Kitch delighted to get it wrong as O’s ease home

Brian Jeeves
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Leyton Orient v Cheltenham Town – Sky Bet League One – Brisbane Road – Reaction

Leyton Orient 3-1 Cheltenham Town

Peter Kitchen was delighted to get his pre-match prediction wrong as depleted Leyton Orient produced a superb performance and returned to Sky Bet League One winning ways with a 3-1 triumph over relegation-threatened Cheltenham Town at the Gaughan Group Stadium. 

“In football, things don’t always go by the book and I’m happy to admit, that I called this one wrong,” Kitchen told Yellow Sport.

“We saw off Cheltenham, and with three cracking goals all superbly struck.” 

“We have been in a poor run of form recently due to the absence of several key players due to injury and we hadn’t won in E10 since mid-February. 

“With our play-off hopes ended over Easter and with nothing materially to play for, Richie Wellens had stated that he was planning to trial some youngsters, so a point was the best I was expecting or hoping for. With limited players available to Richie, he made three changes including a start for young Zeck Obiero, who went on to give a man-of-the-match performance.”

Kitchen continued: “We were also playing a team who are fighting for their League One survival and who I would have expected to be aggressive, come and pressurise us, fight for every ball and try and unsettle and disrupt our rhythm. The bruising encounter never materialised and after the first twenty minutes or so, the O’s were knocking the ball around with some slick passing sequences once they settled into the game. 

“Orient dominated proceedings from there on in and rarely allowed the Robins to get near them in what was an open, entertaining encounter, with both sides having chances and plenty of shots, sixteen for the O’s and twelve from the visitors. On thirty-four minutes, Ethan Galbraith struck the first goal with a terrific shot from just outside the box and ten minutes later Ollie O’Neil cutting in from the left, curled a sublime shot inside the far post from all of twenty yards. 

“After the break, the Robins came out with more purpose but failed to convert a couple of chances which might have got them back in it and made the game close. Five minutes from time, Ruel Sotiriou put the seal on the game when he drove in another cracking goal from the edge of the box, his eleventh of the season. 

The former frontman concluded: “Cheltenham managed a consolation goal deep into added time when we failed to clear and Joe Nuttall forced the ball over the line, but by then the game was over. 

“This was an encouraging performance and result by the O’s and there is already a lot of optimism about next season and with Exeter City, the visitors to E10 on Tuesday night, it’s another chance to finish the season on a high.”

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Brian Jeeves

Email: sport@yellowad.co.uk