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Nolan: Management isn’t easy!

10:00 08 February 2016

Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan (centre) celebrates their win at Portsmouth with goalkeeper coach Lee Harrison (left) and assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler.

Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan (centre) celebrates their win at Portsmouth with goalkeeper coach Lee Harrison (left) and assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler.

07958 573219 simon.oconnor@virgin.net

Orient earned a third win out of four under their new player-manager at Portsmouth last weekend

Leyton Orient's Jobi McAnuff celebrates his strike at Portsmouth while his team mates rush to congratulate him (pic: Simon O'Connor).Leyton Orient's Jobi McAnuff celebrates his strike at Portsmouth while his team mates rush to congratulate him (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Leyton Orient boss Kevin Nolan was a happy man on Saturday, but has insisted management is not easy.

The O’s player-manager featured for 70 minutes at Fratton Park and his side earned a terrific 1-0 win over Portsmouth thanks to Jobi McAnuff’s stunning 53rd minute strike.

It easily could have been a lot more with Jay Simpson and Nolan both missing great chances while Armand Gnanduillet hit the post late on.

But in the end it wasn’t to matter, as the east Londoners earned a third victory out of four under the former West Ham United skipper.

He admitted afterwards that being captain at various big clubs has helped him make the transition.

Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan looks to block Portsmouth's Gary Roberts hitting the ball forward (pic: Simon O'Connor).Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan looks to block Portsmouth's Gary Roberts hitting the ball forward (pic: Simon O'Connor).

“Management is tough and I have had to lean on a lot of people and thankfully I have a good support system at home and at the club so it has probably been a little bit easier going into it because of that,” said Nolan.

“I think being a captain at three massive clubs has helped in the respect of that when I was at Bolton, we were in Europe. I was helping manage all those big egos, well not egos, but big players.

“Then going to Newcastle and managing the dressing room. I was always looking forward and I wanted to give this a crack and as we said earlier, it did come earlier than I thought.”

Even though Nolan didn’t expect to become a manager at 33, he has been thrilled with how well things have gone so far.

Leyton Orient player-manager attempts a pass against Portsmouth (pic: Simon O'Connor).Leyton Orient player-manager attempts a pass against Portsmouth (pic: Simon O'Connor).

He was full of praise for his coaching team as well as the other backroom staff at Brisbane Road.

Orient’s player-manager believes a strong spirit is developing between his squad of players and knows that could be key in the future.

Nolan added: “It is not easy, but I am giving it 110 per cent and I will continue to do that.

“I am delighted with the way everyone has responded in the club from the president and his support staff to my coaching staff now and all the lads behind them in the physio and fitness department and then my players.

“The players have been brilliant and I am trying to keep that happy medium where I am still a player, but also a manager.

“We are getting there and getting the camaraderie going and I am really enjoying it – the camaraderie gets you wins just as much as playing well.”

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