Chesterfield v Leyton Orient – Emirates FA Cup Second Round – SMH Group Stadium – Reaction
Chesterfield 1-0 Leyton Orient
Peter Kitchen was disappointed but not overly surprised to see Leyton Orient slip out of the Emirates FA Cup at the hands of runaway Vanarama National League leaders Chesterfield at the SMH Group Stadium.
A troublesome centre from Ollie Banks looped awkwardly off Idris El Mizouni to secure the Spireites’ progress: “We’ve missed a golden opportunity to pit our skills against Championship side Watford at Vicarage Road and a nice payday in Round Three,” Kitchen told Yellow Sport.
“Following a night of heavy snowfall, fans from both clubs answered a call for assistance in clearing the pitch and ensuring the match was playable. A total of 569 O’s fans in a bumper 8,232 crowd made the journey to Derbyshire despite the weather and the game being doubtful, but after the performance, I think quite a few might have wished they had stayed at home.”
“The former frontman continued: “Richie Wellens made two changes to his team, with Max Sanders replacing the injured Aaron Drinan and Brandon Cooper having to replace Dan Happe just before kick-off after the big centre-back pulled a muscle in the warm-up.
“The game went very much as we forecasted in the preview, with the home side setting the pace and taking the game to Orient who just didn’t appear to be at the races, but more importantly there appeared to be a distinct lack of passion and no penetration when they did have opportunities to play the ball forward in what was a very poor display.
“The one certainty a team can expect when they play opponents from a lower level in this competition is that they are going to battle for every ball and work their socks off and we have to show the character and determination to match this first before we earn the right to play our pretty possession football.
“It’s not always possible to control every game just by keeping the ball and if it’s given away too often then we will end up chasing shadows. Chesterfield made the breakthrough just before half-time when Banks’ cross was accidentally deflected over Sol Brynn and into the far post by El Mizzouni to give Paul Cook’s side the lead.
“The Spireites have won all but one of their home games in all competitions this season and they never really looked like surrendering their lead against the O’s who looked well below their best.”
Kitchen concluded: “Richie who was very disappointed with his team’s performance, made his feelings known after the game and will now have to consider how he can lift his team for next Saturday’s visit of Derby County.
“He will also be very concerned with the injury to Dan Happe and the further drain on his squad which is starting to look extremely fragile in recent weeks.”