Orient boss ‘to manage squad’
- Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO
Liverani looking to make changes
Leyton Orient boss Fabio Liverani expects to rotate his squad as they continue to battle against the drop from League One.
Italian Liverani made four changes to his starting line-up for the visit of Port Vale, with loan signing Jake Taylor handed a debut in midfield.
And he saw O’s come from 1-0 down to take the points thanks to David Mooney’s penalty, a Neill Collins own goal and late strike from Dean Cox.
Victory left Orient one point adrift of safety with a game in hand and they visit Coventry tonight (Wednesday), before hosting Gillingham on Bank Holiday Monday.
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Liverani said: “Of course our objective is to win as many games as possible, but we have to manage the squad.
“We have three games in eight days so we’ll see who’s available, who is fully fit and who’s not fully fit and make sure we manage the players accordingly.
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“Everything will be decided on May 3, the last game of the season, and whoever is going to be more determined and more hungry to win games is going to be the team that avoid relegation.”
Andrea Dossena was left out against Port Vale with a slight hamstring problem, while Burnley loanee Luke O’Neill was replaced by Nathan Clarke midway through the second half.
Liverani added: “He’s a little bit tired from all the games that he’s played. Since he’s arrived he’s played basically all the games so we decided to give some minutes to other players.”
Taylor, 23, came straight into the side after joining from Championship outfit Reading late last week and made a good impression on the right with Ryan Hedges away on Wales under-21 duty.
“He only trained with us once so of course he couldn’t play a perfect game, but I think his performance was overall good,” said Liverani.
“Of course he needs to understand some mechanisms and movements on the pitch, but overall I think it’s a good sign.
“He’s a player that can help us because we didn’t have many players in midfield so we needed numbers.”
Taylor made way for Lloyd James with five minutes left, with the Welshman making his return after recovering from a broken leg.
And Liverani admitted the 27-year-old could play his part in the closing weeks, adding: “James is an important player for the club in the past seasons and a player with different attributes to the other players in the squad.
“Saying that, it’s his first game so we can’t consider him the saviour for us. He’s a player that can help us to the end of the season, but we have to be able to wait until he’s 100 per cent.”