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18/09 Leyton Orient 2nd Half

By: Tony Butcher
Date: 19/09/2004

NO changes were made by either team at half time. Oh look, they have a courgette at centre back. La-di-da-di-da. Seen any good films lately?

Home > 2004-2005 Season > Reports > Leyton Orient (h)

Grimsby Town 2 Leyton Orient 0
18 Sep 2004, Coca Cola League 2

McDermott, that echo of a distant time, billowed down the right and onto a pass from Reddy, to the bye-line, a cross, deep, curling, curving...on to a defender’s chest. None of the Town "strikers" bothered to run into the heart of the area. Still, dynamism, a pass, and some movement. A minute later Macca chased a one-two with Sestanovich but was forearmed away from the ball. Macca was too polite to harangue the ref. We weren’t. Urgency following their half time natter. After about 50 minutes they had a shot, it spooned wide and high, dropping yards beyond Williams’ left hand post. I only mention it to waste a few more precious seconds of your life. You have to feel what we felt watching it. Expectant but disappointed, feeling a little fury at false promise of something interesting being revealed. A bit like a Sestanovich dribble. He did another one of them, you know. Was it four or five defenders this time? He dithered so long that one of them came back and whisked the ball away. To pass, to shoot, perchance to dream of something happening.

So have you seen any films lately then? You haven’t answered my question.

Macca again, whizzing away behind the defence, about 15 yards out, just outside the penalty area. He crossed, he crumpled, flattened by a lunge. A momentary advantage allowed, the cross too deep, the referee awarded Town a free kick. Darn fine decision that. Pinault waved everyone away and stood imperiously over the ball. The referee insisted the wall backed away at least eight yards. What are we getting excited about? Town never score from these situations. Pinault curled a super low cross into the heart of the penalty area. CROWE zipped in and, six yards out in the very centre, headed firmly down past the goalkeeper’s right toe and into the net. How ironic, the Mark Smith of the noughties had scored totally against the run of his own play. Still, it made us happy a couple of minutes before the hour.

Orient then decided to up the pace of their attacking. When I say up the pace I really mean they did some. A minute or so after the goal they did three passes, all of which went to their own players, none of which were in the air. This was enough to send the Town defenders spinning away in paroxysms of mirth, as one of their bald-headed strikers, just outside the right hand corner of the Town area, span around and clipped a shot just wide of Williams’ left hand post. Town’s response was to pass the ball to Sestanovich. He drifted past three defenders and, from about 25 yards out, walloped a shot to Harrison’s left. A good, though routine, save followed. If it’d gone in the goalie would have cried, but it was just enough to bring some applause.

Orient realised Plan A wasn’t working so they reverted to Plan A+, which is hit it in the air to a different big bloke. On came a couple of substitutes and they were a bit perkier up front. They did pile on pressure playing boom-boom percentage football. Bang it up, bang it in, see what happens stuff. And those long throws as well, from one of which there was a scramblette inside the Town area, no Royals involved. Ah, but all this new found attacking intent just opened up the spaced for the three amigos. Well, in theory. The practice was awful. Moments of danger were created and wasted by some appalling passes. Parkinson, twisting free, belting down the middle, a defender in front, Sestanovich alongside. He passed to the defender. Later Sestan was freed on the half way line. On he went, just one defender in front of him, Reddy unmarked to his left. Sestanovich passed directly to the last defender, who was motionless in front of him, legs akimbo. The home fans were a little disappointed.

Anthony Williams
Justin Whittle
Terrell Forbes
Dean Gordon
Terry Fleming
John McDermott
Thomas Pinaultgoal
Jason Crowegoal
Ashley Sestanovich
Andy Parkinson
Michael Reddy


Chris Williams
Greg Young
Paul Robinson
Ronnie Bull
Stacy Coldicott


Kevin Wright


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What were the O’s up to? Still piling the ball forward, barging and bunching, winning more throw ins. Yes, I’m as bored as you by those words. A shot wide excited the away fans, not us. From outside the area it went two yards wide of Williams’ left hand post. You’d have to be sat in the Main Stand to get worried by that. Then again, they ‘d get worried by the rising price of Windowlene. Orient did lots of crosses, the Town defence did lots of headers, and Williams even came off his line to catch it a few times. Reddy had a bit of a second wind in the last 15 minutes, perhaps he’d had Greg Young’s pre-match meal. Reddy rolled around the left a bit, surging past the leaden-footed defenders, getting into the box, seeing no support and falling over. And again, another Reddy break. Along the bye-line, towards goal, infield, down he went, up went to the Town fans. Penalty? No, Parkinson tripped him, the ref wasn’t that bad.

I’ll just take this lull in proceedings to mention Macca again. Several raids down the right, persistent crossing and the perennial problem of lack of strikers in the area. And let’s have a go at the linesman. With Macca set free behind the defence, the linesman flagged for offside when McD was at least three yards on side. Macca had run from behind the linesman, who was level with the last defender. A dreadful decision for which the crowd made a suitable noise.

In the last few minutes Orient were camped out in the Town half, bombarding the Town goal with high crosses. Williams flapped one behind for a corner, and a whole series of corners and throw ins followed. The Town defence looked solid, unflappable and unbreachable. I wrote too soon. A ludicrous decision by the referee gave Orient a free kick on their left just outside the penalty area near the bye-line. It was awarded against McDermott when Scott had tried to flick the ball past McD. Doesn’t the referee know who he is? It’s Macca, he never fouls, he is fragrant. The free kick was zoomed beyond the far post. Williams shuffled across to catch it but one of the big bruisers barged into him. A free kick surely? No, a corner given and from the corner Williams made a brilliant save, pushing away a near post header low to his left. The loose ball was wellied up field to Reddy on the half way line, on the left. Reddy fought off a defender, outsprinted him and raced goalwards. Onwards in to the area and a whole lotta shakin’ going on around Harrison’s knees. Simpson hared back and stood between Reddy and goal about 10 yards out, just wide of goal. Reddy tapped the ball past Simpson and ran into the outstretched knee. Penalty!

Who to take it? Gordon of course, he’d said so after the Wycombe debacle, hadn’t he. Err, oooh, Pinault picked up the ball and strode across to the penalty spot. Gordon marched after him. They then had a furious argument with both tapping their own chests and pointing at the ball. It was hilarious really, with Pinault gallicly shrugging Gordon, the mild mannered janitor, away. What were they saying? Perhaps the £50 goal bonus was really vital to them. Maybe it’s Pinault’s mother’s birthday and he needs it to buy her a present. Perhaps one of them is taking a lady out to a sophisticated local restaurant, one where the bread and butter isn’t included in the price. Or maybe Pinault couldn’t stand the thought of being joint top scorer with Crowe. PINAULT took two steps and curled the ball into the right side netting as Harrison lunged left. Game over, except for the two minutes of piddling about waiting for the referee to officially end this so-called football match.

There you are, a far from vintage performance, but it was a bit better than against Rochdale, in that at least three players had some gumption going forward. The opposition was similarly lacking in wit, similarly basic and limited in both ambition and individual skill. Fortunately for Town their only decent looking player, Carlisle, was taken off with 25 minutes left. The best Town players were the defenders. Don’t kid yourselves into thinking that this must mean Orient were impressive; it is merely that they didn’t have any particular threat because of the competence of the Town players. Don’t kid yourselves that Town’s front three were anything to write home about. Sestanovich looked like a heavyweight boxer trying to foxtrot, whilst Parkinson had a day where everything went wrong. If it was 1978 I’d say it was his biorhythms out of synch.

Still, a win is a win, and winning whilst not playing well is better than humiliating teams and losing. All one could say about this game is that both teams were in false positions at the start of play

Nicko’s Man of the Match

Three candidates, all from the back line. Forbes was most assured, Mr Cool at the back, with simple but effective distribution. He lamped it long when needed, passed when required. McDermott was superb, the only Town threat in attack with his metronomic marauding, and his old self in defence - defending without tackling, the lost art. But, and only just (we had to have six recounts) Mr Dean Gordon was exemplary again. He stopped them and started us. His crossfield passing was magnificent and in some ways it is embarrassing that he’s playing fourth division football. He even trod on the ball with glamorous grace.

Official Warning

K Wright. Seemed to take agin the moaning bargers of old London Town, though not enough to flash his cards. He really should have done something about their number 11 in particular. There were a few bizarre decisions, but nothing that hurt us too much, so how to score? Distinctly average, so 5.0293. And why not?

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