John Mackie: Leyton Orient fans just want to be kept informed

Leyton Orient fans, some in fancy dress on the final-day of the League Two season at Yeovil Town (pi

Leyton Orient fans, some in fancy dress on the final-day of the League Two season at Yeovil Town (pic: Simon O'Connor). - Credit: Archant

Former O’s skipper discusses frustration of supporters and how the expectations of the club needs to be relaxed

Ex-Leyton Orient captain John Mackie believes the current hierarchy at Brisbane Road need to be more transparent with the fans.

The O’s supporters are still waiting to find out which players will be offered new contracts and who will be manager for next season.

Andy Hessenthaler was in charge of the first team for the last five games of the campaign, but it doesn’t seem likely he’ll take the job permanently.

Mackie, who skippered the east Londoners to promotion from League Two in 2006, believes the expectations of president Francesco Becchetti need to be relaxed.


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He said: “Like everyone else you don’t know what decision will be made next and that annoys people and causes frustration, but the fans are 100 per cent behind the club.

“Like Barry Hearn said the other night, however you get to support Orient, you don’t just leave them behind. Those in charge now need to realise people just want honesty and to be kept informed.

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“The president says he is going to meet the supporters in July, but it is two years down the line now and that really needed to be done in the first season.

“Orient fans won’t stop supporting the team, but they just want some honesty and to be kept in the know. They don’t expect success every season like Chelsea or Manchester City.

“I don’t think they should be in League Two, they are a League One club, but they’ve made a big step backwards recently.

“They have gone from being a few kicks away from the Championship to now being in League Two. They aren’t going to go through the divisions so the expectation from the club can’t be too much.”

Orient’s former captain went on to admit he can fully understand the frustration of the Brisbane Road supporters. Many were bemused to see Lee Harrison leave his role as goalkeeper coach at the club in April for no apparent reason.

Mackie believes the president needs to tell the O’s faithful why certain decisions are being made, adding: “They need to let fans know what they are thinking and the expectations. I don’t think they will be too high now.

“I feel the frustration of the supporters because two years ago they were a few penalties away from the Championship and now they are in League Two.

“Some of the decisions made during the season they don’t understand and I don’t to be honest. You get rid of Lee Harrison and then the goalkeeper Alex Cisak wins the Player of the Year Award – how does that make sense?

“You get rid of Kevin Nolan after three defeats in four games and make the decision to let him concentrate on playing and not managing, but he is closer to the end of his career rather than the start.

“Surely if you do anything, you make Kevin concentrate on managing and not playing? There is no explanation for these decisions and it just doesn’t add up and that is where the frustration comes from.”

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