Peter Kitchen: The cup cautiously offers Orient a clean slate

Leyton Orient v Maldon & Tiptree – Breyer Group Stadium – Emirates FA Cup first round – Sunday 12:45pm

Leyton Orient v Maldon & Tiptree – Preview:

PETER KITCHEN is hopeful that Carl Fletcher can springboard his tenure at Leyton Orient with a morale-boosting Emirates FA Cup first-round victory over BetVictor Isthmian Leaguer’s, Maldon & Tiptree, at the Breyer Group Stadium on Sunday.

Fletcher’s rein hasn’t got off to the best of starts, with Orient flattering to deceive during the early weeks of his reign, leading to some supporters questioning the appointment of the former AFC Bournemouth man.

Nevertheless, Kitchen believes the tie hands Orient an opportunity to wipe the slate clean and get their stop-start campaign underway.

“The defeat at Morecambe will have hurt everyone at the club – I’m sure words were said and everyone from the manager to the tea lady will be keen to put this right, and quickly,” Kitchen told Yellow Sport.

“The midweek game against Brighton & Hove Albion under 21’s will have little bearing on Sunday’s match but it will have allowed Fletcher to have a look at one or two other players, broadening his horizons as to his options, team selection and perhaps a different system.

“Of course, Orient will have to be wary. The tie has all the hallmarks of a potential banana-skin. Maldon & Tiptree are flying on all fronts, winning all of their league fixtures as well as going well in the cup. It is a dream draw for the Jammers. They will arrive knowing they have nothing to lose and that the mood around Brisbane Road is on edge.”

Kitchen continued: “Taking into account Maldon’s form, Orient should be prepared and ultimately too strong. The attitude needs to be spot-on from the first whistle. The longer Maldon are in the game, the darker the mood will become around the stadium. We need an early goal and need to stamp our authority on the tie.

“Maldon have been free-scoring in their domestic matches and will contain several boys keen to show that they can cut it against Football League opposition.

“One to watch out for is striker, Jorome Slew, who has already scored twenty times in just thirteen starts. He has all the attributes of a natural goalscorer. A good display against Orient could well alert a bigger club, although he seems quite content with life at Maldon just now.

“But overall, I expect Orient to win the tie. Anything other than that is unacceptable and will only fuel the flames of criticism towards the new boss.”

Leyton Orient v Maldon & Tiptree – Head to head:

Leyton Orient and Maldon & Tiptree have never met in a competitive fixture.

Peter Kitchen’s prediction: Leyton Orient 3-1 Maldon & Tiptree
Jeevesie’s prediction: Leyton Orient 2-1 Maldon & Tiptree

Brian Jeeves

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