Some dogged scrapping brought Orient back from a goal down against fellow promotees Carlisle in a match that was high on excitement if low on quality.
The first goal came quickly and the fans were already dreading a thrashing along the lines of the 4-1 defeat by Brighton the previous Tuesday, and defensive wobbles and a lack of eagerness to win the ball didn’t help reassure us.
But still, the team struggled on and although Carlisle were consistently the strong it was probably the home side who had more chances to steal the points. The strike from Lockwood which brought the equaliser was pure class, with Lockie’s left foot hooked over the ball to power it through the crowd and inside the far post. Matthew Lockwood must now surely be one of the highest scoring left-backs in any league.
The team still looked low on confidence, though, and were barely fighting for balls that were anywhere near 50/50. Somehow there was a blue shirt first to tbe ball every time, which was also a feature of last year’s promotion campaign (despite the successes) and would have to be pointed at as the source of our downfall if Orient are relegated this season.
There were some bright spots: Adam Chambers played as well as ever and was probably the most competitive player in the side, and Alexander was also working to win balls. The new striker Ryan Jarvis showed a sharpness that we’re rarely had in strikers.
The result was relatively positive, given the 9 goals conceded in the previous two matches, but there will need to be improvement if Orient are to climb back out of the relegation zone. Hanging onto a draw against mid-table sides at home is certainly a bad omen for the remainder of the season.