Peter Kitchen: O’s need to keep building momentum

Brian Jeeves
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Leyton Orient v Walsall – Breyer Group Stadium – Sky Bet League Two – Saturday 3pm

Leyton Orient v Walsall – Preview:

PETER KITCHEN was delighted to see Leyton Orient end their recent winless Sky Bet League Two sequence ended at Northampton Town last weekend. However, the former frontman has now urged the players to follow that up with another three points when Walsall are the visitors to the Breyer Group Stadium on Saturday.

“We must keep some daylight between ourselves and the bottom, but also we have an opportunity to stay in touch with those in the top half as well. This is a vital game,” Kitchen told Yellow Sport.

“Ross Embleton rested several players for the Trophy match at AFC Wimbledon during the week. We should be fresh to face a Walsall side who like themselves, have been somewhat inconsistent at the start of the season.

“Walsall will provide a tough test and will be keen to bounce back from last weekends 3-0 defeat to Salford City at the Banks’s Stadium. Before that, Walsall had won three on the bounce. It will be interesting to see which Walsall, and indeed, which Orient, show up?”

Orient have picked up four points from their last two league outings, coinciding with interim boss Embleton’s decision to step down once a new manager has been appointed. And Kitchen believed the series of events leading to that announcement is now behind Orient, allowing them to move forward positively.

“Decision making and psychology both on and off the pitch in football are intangible and as such difficult to quantify, yet they are very important factors,” he explained.

“The recent decision by Ross to step down appears to be the right one as it has taken a weight off his inexperienced shoulders and some pressure of the players, who have always been behind him, but perhaps weren’t always in agreement with some of his team selections and tactics.

“The decision to revert to a 4-4-2 formation at Northampton, to change the central defensive pairing with Coulson and Happe and to bring in Matt Harrold last week with his physical presence, all helped to make the team look more solid defensively and more physical and competitive as well as impacting psychologically on the players morale and spirit in what was a much improved team performance.

“The O’s are still looking to make a permanent Managerial appointment and there may be someone new in charge for this game, however, I think the players will be fired up and buoyed by the result last week and will be fully behind Ross if he is still in charge.”

Leyton Orient v Walsall – Head to head:

Leyton Orient won: 30
Drawn: 19
Walsall won: 22

Leyton Orient v Walsall – Last five meetings (all competitions):

September 28, 2013 – League One
Leyton Orient 1-1 Walsall

December 7, 2013 – FA Cup
Leyton Orient 1-0 Walsall

March 22, 2014 – League One
Walsall 1-1 Leyton Orient

August 23, 2014 – League One
Leyton Orient 0-0 Walsall

February 28, 2015 – League One
Walsall 0-2 Leyton Orient

Peter Kitchen’s prediction: Leyton Orient 2-1 Walsall
Jeevesie’s prediction: Leyton Orient 1-0 Walsall

Brian Jeeves