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Nolan hails Orient squad after victory

18:48 23 January 2016

New Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan (right) alongside president Francesco Becchetti (pic: LOFC).

New Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan (right) alongside president Francesco Becchetti (pic: LOFC).

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Former West Ham United captain thrilled with clean sheet and first triumph as Brisbane Road boss

Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan was delighted that his team managed to keep a clean sheet against Wycombe Wanderers today and take all three points.

The 33-year-old told his squad before the match that if they defended well, they would be able to win the clash at Adams Park.

It was tight for much of the first period, but Jay Simpson and Calaum Jahraldo-Martin scored after the break to earn a 2-0 success.

Nolan was thrilled with the result and full of praise for his players after the encounter with the Chairboys.

He said: “We haven’t had a clean sheet in nearly two months and it seemed if they had to win a game they had to score more than one goal.

“When you have got a player like Jay, who is top goalscorer in the division, I don’t think you should be 11th or 10th in the league. You should be in the top seven.

“That is something I drilled into them today that if they could keep a clean sheet then Jay would get a chance and he only needs one! You have seen that and I said if we can keep that clean sheet we are one nil and away so it was great.

“I am really pleased and thankful to all the staff and the lads because they have made the transition so easy over the last few days. I have asked them to take on a lot over the last two days in terms of all the training we have done and the meetings we have had.

“But I must admit everything that we worked on in training has worked out here today and hopefully they have got a bit more belief in them now and can improve the little things more and more and strive to get up that table.”

Nolan revealed what he said to his players in their last meeting before the match with Wycombe.

He told Orient’s squad that they are responsible for the position they are in and need to start showing their quality.

The former West Ham captain believes they managed to do that against the Chairboys and insists more is to come from the O’s.

Nolan added: “I said in my first meeting with the players that there was nobody more disappointed when I heard Ian Hendon had been sacked.

“I was very disappointed for him because I thought when I was training with the lads last year that the squad had all the hallmarks to get back into League One. I said to them it is down to you lot.

“I said it is now about you because if uses don’t respond and do the right things the president and everyone will start thinking you are the problem, but I think they have responded really well.

“They know they let themselves down and that’s why they are in the position they are now, but to be fair to the boys they responded really well to me this week and I can’t thank them enough.

“I said in the last meeting we had before the ground, I said ‘I just want to thank you for all you have done in the last 48 hours and all your cooperation. Now let’s go out and enjoy this game all together and stick as a team no matter what happens today but let’s start with three points’ and they responded so I can’t thank them enough.”

It was an impressive first showing from Nolan’s Orient and moves them up to eighth in the table.

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