Clohessy: We all defended brilliantly
18:00 31 August 2015
Simon O'Connor Photography
Orient vice-captain reflects on home success, the performance of Jay Simpson and defending as a team
Leyton Orient defender Sean Clohessy felt Jay Simpson’s goal on the stroke of half time was key to helping the Brisbane Road club stay perfect in League Two at the weekend by beating Bristol Rovers 2-0.
Lloyd James put Ian Hendon’s side ahead in the 23rd minute from the penalty spot before Simpson scored his fourth of the season just before the break.
That took the stuffing out of the Pirates and although they made changes for the second period, they couldn’t breach Alex Cisak’s goal.
Even though Mathieu Baudry was forced off at half time and replaced by Alan Dunne, the O’s looked in control and defended brilliantly after the interval.
Clohessy said: “That goal on half time is the killer for them. If we go in at the break one nil up they might not even change their shape because they come out thinking they can do the same as before.
“But when it goes two nil it is a bit of a clincher as long as we hold steady like we did. We knew a clean sheet won the game for us and the longer the match went on the easier it looked.
“We have had a steady back four, obviously Alan Dunne has come in and played various positions. He is experienced and knows how to play every single role in the back four. We have leaders in there and we talk.
“There is going to be times when we look like we are a little under pressure, but with all the pressure that Bristol Rovers had they didn’t really have any clear cut chances.”
The Orient vice-captain went on to insist the strong defensive display isn’t just down to the back four, but the whole team.
Clohessy was full of praise for the effort that the front men put in, which was demonstrated when Simpson made two key challenges in the second half.
He also praised the contribution of Ollie Palmer and Dean Cox in making sure Hendon’s team defend from the front.
“It is not just the back four, but the midfield are working really hard and that makes it a lot more easier for us,” added Clohessy.
“The front two work their socks off as well and especially when Ollie comes on for the last 15-20 minutes. He has been working really hard and causing problems for the opposition.
“I think Jay coming back to defend is the mentality everyone in the team has got. Everybody has to work, you are not going to be in the starting XI unless you are working hard. It is as simple as that.
“If you want to stay up front and not work then the gaffer is most likely going to drop you. Jay knows, Paul McCallum knows and Ollie knows that they have to put in a shift. You only have to look at ‘Coxy’ because he runs round like a madman at times, but that is what the gaffer wants.”
That demand by Hendon has worked perfectly so far and long may it continue.