Orient being Orient

Leyton Orient’s stadium announcer Phillip Othen discusses the O’s recent form

Brisbane Road

The Matchroom Stadium, Brisbane Road, home to Leyton Orient FC. Credit: Martin Belam

There comes a time in every PA announcer’s life when they start to dread home fixtures.

There will be a little run of games where nothing clicks and the only words you utter are players from the away team after scoring another goal. Oh, and additional time – there is always that.

And March had started with so much promise. Despite a drab opening 41 minutes, French striker Armand Gnanduillet scored a goal-of-the-season contender and followed it up with a second for a comfortable victory against Crawley.

Following this up with a decent 2-2 draw at Carlisle, you would be forgiven for thinking the arrival of Luton to Brisbane Road would serve up decent entertainment. It did not. A sloppy goal was enough to win it for the visitors (after a bad mistake from defender Shaun Brisley, who then was stretchered off and hospitalised – he was not having a good day).

So Orient being Orient, they then head off to second-placed Oxford and nab a narrow win.

Then when Morecombe visit East London and get their goalkeeper sent off after 12 minutes, lo and behold, Orient still struggle at home and can only rely on a comedic own goal to seal all three points.

Now nestled snuggly in the play-offs, the Easter weekend looked like an opportunity to take points off a promotion rival (Accrington) followed by a home banker against lowly Hartlepool.

One hundred and eighty minutes later, the Londoners had lost both, failed to score a single goal and dropped out of the top seven.

At least I got to announce two Hartlepool players rather than the usual one after they scored their second, plus a great-named substitute with a first name of Rakish who, ironically, was quite dashing once on the pitch.

So as I type, Orient sit in eighth place with time running out until the end of the season. The good news is that only three of the remaining seven games are at home.

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