Match Preview: Shots vs Orient

Aldershot Town v Leyton Orient Match Preview – Tuesday 12th March 2019

Despite a spirited performance on Saturday, Aldershot Town left Holker Street without any points, after a 95th minute John Rooney penalty ensured that they stayed in Barrow. Earlier Dior Angus had given the home side a first half lead, which Adam McDonnell cancelled out with his seventh goal of the season on the hour mark. Prior to Rooney’s late winner, Shots keeper Jake Cole had saved an 84th minute penalty from Josh Kay. On Tuesday, Town return to the EBB Stadium to take on National League leaders Leyton Orient. BBC Surrey’s Rob Worrall previews the action…

Shots Squad:
The Shots will once again be without long term injured trio; George Fowler, Lewis Kinsella and James Rowe, although Rowe is now back in training. Skipper Scott Rendell is likely to return to the squad after serving a two-match suspension for his red card at Braintree. Reece Grant missed Saturday’s trip to Barrow through injury, but may well be available again midweek, as may Hull loanee goalkeeper Will Mannion.

Name: Leyton Orient FC
Founded: 1881 (as Eagle Cricket Club)
Nickname: The O’s
Ground: Breyer Group Stadium
Head Coach: Justin Edinburgh
National League Position 2017/18: 13th
Current National League Position: 1st

Recent History:
Relegated from the Football League in 2017 for the time in their history, The O’s initially struggled at National League level and parted with manager Steve Davis before the half way mark, replacing him with Justin Edinburgh, who, largely working with the same playing squad, began to turn things around. A strong finish saw them finish 13th and they have kicked on this season, holding a position in the top three throughout.

The Gaffer:
Justin Edinburgh is a former professional footballer that played more than 200 games for Tottenham Hotspur, as well as having spells with Southend United and Portsmouth. He ended his playing career at Billericay, the club at which he also began his fifteen-years as a manager. Following appointments at Fisher Athletic, Grays Athletic and Rushden & Diamonds, Edinburgh then took Newport County back to the Football League via the play-offs in 2013. Having established County’s place in League Two, Edinburgh left for League One Gillingham in February 2015. In his second season with The Gills, he guided them to second place at Christmas, only for them to eventually finish ninth. He was sacked midway through the following season and out of work for just ten days, before being appointed Northampton Town manager, a spell that lasted just seven months. He was sacked on 31st August 2017 and took the manager’s job at Leyton Orient in November 2017, following the termination of Steve Davis’ contract and guided The O’s to the safety of 13th place last season.

The O’s playing Squad:
Following consolidation last season, Edinburgh kept much of the same playing squad for this season. Just 9 players departed, following release or mutual terminations of their contract. Only three players came in, one of whom was youth goalkeeper Arthur Janata. Young midfielder Dale Gordon joined from Stevenage and striker James Alabi signed, after spending most of last season at Dover Athletic. Arguably Edinburgh’s real coup was convincing top scorer Macauley Bonne to stay at Brisbane Road – a decision which has paid dividends for both parties, with Bonne currently their top scorer, having hit 21 National League goals to date. The evergreen Jobi McAnuff has been in superb from again this season as has midfielder Josh Koroma. A key addition in recent months is winger Jordan Maguire-Drew, who has earlier this season been on loan to title chasing rivals Wrexham, who the O’s (crucially) defeated on Saturday.

Tuesday evening’s referee is Carl Brook. Tomorrow’s game will be the fourth Shots match Brook has officiated this season, refereeing our 2-1 win’s over Sutton United and Eastleigh, he was most recently at the EBB Stadium in our 3-0 defeat to Solihull Moors a month ago. He has handed out a total of 70 yellow cards and 8 red cards in the 22 games he’s refereed this season, including sending off Sutton captain Jamie Collins against the Shots back in August.

BBC Surrey Sports Rob Worrall and former Shots star Damon Lathrope will be covering the game live on Tuesday evening. Tune in to the BBC Sport website (or the BBC Sport App) from 7.35pm for full match commentary. To interact with them, tweet @RobShot66.