Peter Kitchen: The situation is killing us

Brian Jeeves
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Leyton Orient v Newport County – Sky Bet League Two – Breyer Group Stadium – Tuesday (7:45pm) – Preview

Frustration is a word banded about by Leyton Orient supporters all too frequently just now.

Indifferent Sky Bet League Two results in what has been a stop-start campaign has left Kenny Jackett’s men floundering in midtable and struggling to make up ground, or for that matter, an impact, in what has been a ruthless division.

Nevertheless, former O’s frontman believes it is more the situation than the squad that is hampering the O’s play-off ambitions just now.

Speaking to Yellow Sport ahead of Tuesday’s huge clash with promotion candidates, Newport County, Kitch explained: “Sure, we have missed big players due to COVID and injury, and a series of drawn matches has been frustrating. But Saturday’s draw with Port Vale almost resembled a pre-season friendly.

“We’ve had so much time off, only with the FA Cup game thrown in, it was almost as if we are having to start again – a pre-season, of sorts, in the middle of the campaign.

“Whether you are at the top or the bottom of the league, players can’t be expected to pick-up match practice at the drop of a hat. The training ground isn’t a substitute for playing games, Sure, you can work on tactics and general fitness, but that only gets put into practice by playing football matches, which have been all too infrequent for us recently.”

Kitchen continued: “Tuesday is going to be another tough encounter. Newport are in the mix and have recorded back-to-back wins over Harrogate Town and Scunthorpe United without conceding a goal. They have form and momentum with them. Somehow we have to break that up.

“Undoubtedly, with a fully fit squad with matches under their belt, this Orient squad is a match for anyone in this league. But circumstances are hurting us at the moment and I’m finding it increasingly difficult to see how we can recover the situation and guarantee a play-off place.”

Peter Kitchen’s prediction: Leyton Orient 1-1 Newport County
Jeevesie’s prediction: Leyton Orient 0-1 Newport County

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Brian Jeeves

Email: sport@yellowad.co.uk