Despite His White Boots

Football, football, football and, if the mood takes me, more football.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Leyton Orient 2 Cheltenham 0

Keeping it real in League One, the first game I've seen in that division since Rangers saw it off a couple of seasons ago. As before, the standard was better than League Two but not as good as The Championship. That always surprises me for some reason.

Briefly, Orient played the better football throughout, without exactly bringing to mind beach football on the Copacabana. With 3 lumbering behemoths of centre-forwards on show, it was fitting that the one forward with a degree of skill, Orient's Gary Alexander, juggled a ball over his shoulder and slammed a half-volley into the top corner from 8 yards, an excellent goal. Cheltenham were very physical throughout and could perhaps have done better by supplying tidy midfielder Grant McCann with more of the ball instead of whacking it over his head. They had their chance early in the second half when someone handled the ball in the Orient area and the referee decided that the hand in question belonged to the home side's lumbering behemoth Jabo Ibehre. I'm not saying that it was or wasn't a penalty, it was one of those where clearly someone handled it, it was just very hard to say who. Unfortunately McCann lost a point on my scouting report by missing the penalty. He went for the blast down the middle which usually does the trick if it's on target but Garner pulled off a fine block.

Buoyed by the miss, Orient started to play with a degree of confidence and won a penalty of their own for god knows what, it was at the far end and I couldn't really see. The shout was for handball again. Lockwood knocked it in and that was pretty much that. I hadn't done any homework before this game and was surprised to read when I got home that this was Orient's first win in 12 games, as I said they played with a fair amount of confidence. Lockwood caught the eye at left back, he has always looked solid every time I've seen him play, and has a good left foot for this level. Funnily enough he was released by QPR without coming anywhere near the first team, I say funnily because right now Rangers don't have a left back worthy of the name. I've seen a lot worse, although to be fair it's all very well looking solid against Barnet and Cheltenham, it might be a different story in the Championship against the likes of Huckerby and Parry.

So not too bad an afternoon, although slightly soured by a post-match treble of defeats for Rangers and Barnet and an utter soaking for me on the way back to the tube station. You know when it rains so hard that it gets in your eyes and you can hardly see ? Like that. I need to grow my hair back again for this eventuality.


  • At 12:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Everyone who ever sees Lockwood says he's a decent player who could cut it in the championship, but no-one has ever taken a chance on him.

    I remember going to see Orient play a few years ago and thinking how good he was and how shit the captain Dean Smith was.

    Smith was sanpped up by Sheffield Wednesday soon after.

    My other great Orient tip was that classy defender Simon Downer would one day play in the Premiership. Almost right, he's now at Weymouth.



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