Can Leyton Orient handle the pressure? We shall see at home to Hartlepool United this weekend!
PUBLISHED: 14:00 15 September 2017
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Steve Davis confident the O’s will thrive on BT Sport cameras this time, but calls on them to be braver on the ball
Leyton Orient boss Steve Davis has backed his squad to cope with the extra pressure of playing in front of the BT Sport cameras this weekend.
Hartlepool United make the long trip down to London to face the O’s for a 12.30pm start at Brisbane Road with the television cameras present to broadcast the fixture live.
It is not the first time Orient have had a match on BT Sport with their opening game of the season at Sutton United also live.
O’s suffered a 2-0 defeat at Gander Green Lane on August 5 and although things have gone better since, there is plenty of pressure on them to deliver against National League rivals Hartlepool, but Davis isn’t worried.
He said: “As a footballer and as a professional you want to be on the TV, because it is a chance to show people who are watching what you can do.
“It is also an opportunity to show how proud you are to play for this football club and play in a way that catches the eye, so the cameras being there on Saturday gives us a platform to do that.”
Orient go into their clash against Hartlepool with serious questions being asked of the team following Tuesday night’s 3-0 defeat at home to Halifax Town..
The O’s entertained the Shaymen looking to bounce back after a poor performance during their 2-0 loss at Boreham Wood last weekend.
But young defenders Michael Clark and Jamie Sendles-White struggled on their first starts of the campaign and Adam Morgan, Tom Denton and Matthew Kosylo netted to give the visitors a deserved win.
It means Orient have dropped down to ninth in the table and suddenly the feel-good factor around Brisbane Road is starting to go.
Saturday was always likely to be a big game, but now it feels massive and another defeat this weekend will see talk of a crisis increase.
O’s are facing a resurgent Monkey Hangers team as well with Craig Harrison’s side beginning to find their form after a poor start.
Hartlepool are unbeaten in four games after registering wins against Guiseley, Maidstone United and Dagenham & Redbridge recently before picking up a point at Wrexham on Tuesday after a goalless draw.
It highlights just how difficult O’s will find things at the weekend and baring in mind they go to high-flying Aldershot on Saturday week, they need a big result.
After playing in front of the BT Sport cameras tomorrow, the east Londoners don’t have to wait too long to be on the TV again!
Their match at Tranmere Rovers on Wednesday, October 4 is going to be broadcast live too, and so is their fixture at Ebbsfleet United on Saturday, November 11 (5.30pm kick-off).
Davis will hope his team are more used to his style of football by the time the cameras follow the O’s to Prenton Park and Stonebridge Road over the next eight weeks.
Orient’s head coach is keen for his squad to continue trying to pass their way to success over playing so-called long-ball football.
He added: “I just need to keep getting my message across that this is the way we play and we need to do it week in, week out no matter how much pressure is put on us by the opposition in terms of trying to stop us playing out.
“It is new to a lot of lads because they are used to whacking it up the pitch and scrapping. Now I am trying to teach them to play football and it is completely different.
“You need to have courage and be brave. At times the players are and sometimes they are not, but it is confidence and success in doing it.
“The more we succeed when we do it the better we will be and I am going to keep encouraging them to do it.
“We will not turn into a Wimbledon and suddenly whack it down the channels like some in this division do.
“I want us to be able to play and play it right and properly because that is the best approach for us.
“Up to Boreham Wood it had worked, but we will have little blips where it doesn’t happen, so we will have to do something different with big Matt coming on.
“When that is the case we need to get the ball up to him a little bit quicker, but we now need to learn to play with Matt in the team.
“We haven’t had a lot of time to do that so far and there are certain things still to work on with him and we need to play a specific way which will benefit him and the team in the situations we need him.”