Preview: Leyton Orient

How Are We Doing

Saturday’s result against Wolves was a draw that felt like a win. For some that may outline the paucity of ambition at the club. For the more optimistic amongst us the result, but more importantly the performance, proved that this side was amongst the best in the division. For the team this is an important result because it is evidence of their potential, had Webster not missed that last minute chance then we would have won against one of the biggest sides in the division at their place.

Going into tomorrow night’s game against Leyton Orient the team should have the confidence that they are at least the equals of any side in League One and can enter into games posing questions to the opposition and not vice versa. It depends on how the team approach this game mentally, the first Tuesday night league match at what surely will be an even emptier Sixfields could be seen as crash back down to reality. Although with Pressley in charge it’s difficult that this type of mentality should manifest itself.

The main team selection issue at the moment will be in the right-back position yet again. Aaron Phillips’s goal against Wolves, as well as making a couple of important challenges, puts further pressure on Pressley to hand the youngster his first start for Coventry. However Jordan Willis was solid defensively against the highly-rated Bakary Sako in Wolverhampton and may be preferred to Phillips yet again in order to stiffen the defence for what should be a stern challenge.

Last Time We Met

Not very long ago in what was our second trip of the season to Brisbane Road where we were beaten on penalties in Johnstone’s Paint Trophy. Tomorrow is the fourth time we’ve played them this calendar year and we’ve yet to beat them although we’ve had our chances. Aside from the lottery of the JPT penalty shoot-out, Orient were fortunate that Leon Clarke missed a penalty when we met in August in the League Cup and last April the O’s were fortunate to squeeze past a City side barely even playing for pride in what was to be the last professional football match at the Ricoh Arena.

How Are They Doing

They’re still unbeaten in the league, much to the surprise of many observers of League One football who expected them to start to tail off as soon as they’re winning run came to an end. The true test of this Orient side may come when they eventually do lose a match but until then they continue to confound the media and their fans expectations of what this team can do.

The not too well kept secret of Orient’s success has been keeping together a small group of players, similar to what Pressley’s done at Coventry this season but out of choice. A number of players for Leyton Orient are in the form of their lives, this includes Kevin Lisbie and David Mooney in attack who are both nearing the top of the League One goalscoring charts. In midfield its Dean Cox, the attacking midfielder, and Moses Odubajo, the winger, to look out for as well as Romain Vincelot who’s improved immeasurably since joining them from Brighton half-way through last season. In defence they have the rock that is ex-Huddersfield man Nathan Clarke who also has a decent long-throw and Frenchman Mathieu Baudry has been a strong performer this season.

This may seem concise compared to other previews of teams so far this season but since we’ve played them so many times recently there’s little to add really.

Prediction

I think many Coventry City fans are confident going into this game based on the belief that Leyton Orient are due a defeat. It’s necessary though to point out that a side that goes unbeaten for this long, it stretches back into last season, rarely get complacent. There’s perhaps a mentality at the London club that everyone expects them to slip up at some point improving the collective mental strength in reaction to it.

This cannot be the reason should Coventry win tomorrow night, if it is it’s almost embarrassing that the only way we can beat a side like Leyton Orient is if they slip up mentally. Coventry have to be bold and assert themselves on the game, playing the way they usually do. I believe that this City side can beat any team in this league on merit which is why I am confident that we can beat Orient tomorrow night by being the better side.

I predict a 2-1 win to Coventry.

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