Leyton Orient v Colchester United – Breyer Group Stadium – Sky Bet League Two – Thursday 3pm
Leyton Orient v Colchester United – Preview:
PETER KITCHEN looked forward to Leyton Orient’s Boxing Day derby with Colchester United and insisted the North Essex side are a good marker for where the O’s want to be.
Colchester arrives in the capital unbeaten in seven Sky Bet League Two matches, sitting just outside the play-off places and having reached the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup before going down to Manchester United at Old Trafford.
“I think Colchester is a decent model in terms of what they are producing on the field. Orient – under the guidance of Nigel Travis and Kent Teague – are pretty well structured. But in terms of where we want to be football-wise, Colchester have been impressive this season.
“I think we all realised that it was no good trying to run before we could walk. League Two is a ruthless league – we’ve had to realise that and adjust.
“It was similar for Colchester when they were relegated a few seasons ago. They initially tried to play their way out of the division but got picked off. It has taken a while, but they now seem to be more than comfortable and ready to push for promotion.”
Kitchen continued: “I’m sure Orient supporters won’t want to wait that long for a return to League One, but I think it will take as long as it needs to. We will want to be ready to make the step, ready to challenge in the league above.
“At the moment, it’s all about League Two – establishing ourselves, building a platform and then pushing on.”
As for the match itself, Kitchen said: “We should have plenty of spirit having won at Cambridge – there will be a big crowd in at Brisbane Road too. It should be a terrific match.
“Colchester are on a roll just now – we will have to be on it right from the start. But if you are looking at a team to emulate, the next stage is trying to beat them. John McGreal’s side are good but not invincible. This is a real opportunity to put down a marker.”
Leyton Orient v Colchester United – Head to head:
Leyton Orient won: 17
Colchester United won: 23
Leyton Orient v Colchester United – Last five meetings (all competitions):
September 13, 2014 – League One
Leyton Orient 0-2 Colchester United
January 24, 2015 – League One
Colchester United 2-0 Leyton Orient
November 12, 2016 – League Two
Colchester United 0-3 Leyton Orient
April 29, 2017 – League Two
Leyton Orient 1-3 Colchester United
September 21, 2019 – League Two
Colchester United 2-1 Leyton Orient
Peter Kitchen’s prediction: Leyton Orient 1-1 Colchester United
Jeevesie’s prediction: Leyton Orient 1-1 Colchester United