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Team News: Leyton Orient vs Chester

PUBLISHED: 17:00 21 November 2017

Jobi McAnuff in action for Leyton Orient at a rain-soaked Boreham Wood (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Jobi McAnuff in action for Leyton Orient at a rain-soaked Boreham Wood (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Simon O'Connor Photography

Interim head coach full of praise for Jobi McAnuff after showing leadership qualities on and off pitch last week

Jobi McAnuff is set to keep the captain’s armband when Leyton Orient host fellow strugglers Chester in the National League tonight.

The 36-year-old returned to the starting line-up on Saturday for Ross Embleton’s first match in temporary charge of the club.

McAnuff had been below-par at Ebbsfleet United on his return from injury, but after impressing the interim head coach in training last week, he started against Dover and put in a good shift.

Embleton was full of praise for the midfielder and he’ll hope for more of the same this evening at Brisbane Road.

He said: “Jobi’s been big for us and I am sure the boys won’t mind me saying this, but there has been a lot of talking over the last few weeks about what is right and what is not and what needs changing and what we need to do to address it.

“But in the end, the talking needs to stop at some stage and we need to stop saying ‘we are not doing this’ and it needs to eliminated from your preparation and you need to go out and do it.

“Jobi has been a real leader and ‘Moons’ (David Mooney) as well, who wasn’t in the team and Charlie Lee is obviously injured.

“Charlie and ‘Moons’ are the two captains and I know Alex Lawless has been captain, but it was important that the way Jobi had imposed himself on the group in the week that he was captain on Saturday as well as being a good performer.

“I put Jobi in a couple of alien positions as well where he found himself inside and he was the holding midfielder when Craig (Clay) bombed forward and someone who has played at the level he has, he is capable of doing that.”

A dilemma for Embleton now is whether he sticks with the 4-4-2 formation which O’s ended Saturday with or stick to the 4-5-1 which Orient began the Dover game with.

Matt Harrold played his part off the bench and will be pushing for a start, but against a well-drilled Chester side, the east Londoners may be better off keeping it tight at the beginning of the contest and therefore sticking with five in midfield.

One person expected to start is 20-year-old goalkeeper Sam Sargeant after he impressed in his first outing of the campaign on Saturday.

Charlie Grainger aggravated a slight hip problem in the warm-up and he will miss out again tonight, so goalkeeper coach Dean Brill will be on the bench again.

Mark Ellis is likely to be among the replacements, like he was last Saturday, and this could be his last home appearance for O’s with his loan from Carlisle United due to expire after the weekend match at Torquay United.

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