Loan market will be important to Leyton Orient, says director of football Martin Ling ahead of 2018/19 season
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The National League club are looking to work with a squad of 22 to 23 players and will use the loan market when required
Martin Ling believes Leyton Orient will use the loan market proactively again next season after acknowledging they had some success and failure in that department during the 2017/18 campaign.
The 51-year-old has revealed the O’s will be looking to sign two or three players, but will aim to use a much smaller squad compared to the past term.
Orient used over 35 players during the previous season and director of football Ling said: “Do we still need a couple of players? Yes. Are we going to have to be proactive in the loan market? Yes.
“We will go off with around 22 to 23 players, which can be enough, but it sometimes gets stretched and if you think about last season, we used around 38 different players on the team sheet.
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“Most clubs who are successful will use under 20 or 20ish and that’s where we need to be, but the good thing about our market is we always have the window open.
“It shuts for seven days and then the loan market stays open, but the problems you have is you can’t loan off Premier League teams and it is a bit harder to loan off the Football League sides.
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“It’s harder to loan off the Football League clubs because they can’t loan, so they have to carry more people to make sure they are covered.
“They can loan to us, but they need to make sure they have players in there to cover and with regard to us, I think we used the loan market alright last season.
“If we go off 22 or 23 then it might be one or two loan players who come in and make a difference for us.”
Orient made nine loan signings last season and it is fair to say three (Josh Coulson, James Brophy and Ebou Adams) were successful and perhaps two others (Bondz N’Gala and Dan Holman) worked out well in the end.
The deals involving Tristan Abrahams, Mark Ellis, Zain Westbrook and Lamar Reynolds were not so good, but overall O’s used the loan market fairly well.
Looking ahead to next season, Ling feels Justin Edinburgh has a good core group to work with and is happy with the average age of the squad.
When the director of football took up his role at Brisbane Road on June 23, there was virtually no senior players at the club.
He managed to improve the level of experience in the team, but acknowledged he did sign too many ‘seniors’ last summer.
One of the over thirties, Rommy Boco, should move after he was put up for transfer in May along with Jake Caprice and Christian Scales.
Elsewhere, Ling is pleased with the team Edinburgh has at his disposal, he said: “I see a really good core here now and a good mix in terms of age in the squad.
“Last season it was overloaded with youngsters and we had to fetch some seniors in and then we got a few too many seniors.
“Then we were looking for the age group between 20 to 28 and we got a couple in like Sam Ling, Brophy and the loanees Ebou and Holman were in that age group and so was Coulson, but at the top end of it.
“It does look like we have got something going in the right direction and we are looking forward to coming back for pre-season.
“We still need two or three additions and it would be better if we could get rid of the people on the transfer list both for them and for us.”