Orient interim head coach excited with league opener close
- Credit: George Phillipou/TGS Photo
The O’s have this final week to get through before they can return to competition action
Ross Embleton is determined to provide Leyton Orient with all the tools they need to hit the ground running in League Two and start positively against Cheltenham Town on Saturday.
The O's finished pre-season with a 2-1 win over a Norwich City XI last weekend after goals from Lee Angol and Josh Wright.
It meant Orient came through their first-team friendly schedule without losing, but it will count for little should they not show up against the Robins at Brisbane Road.
O's interim head coach said: "I told the boys after Saturday we have one week. We're one week away from everything we talked about last season.
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"Everyone is looking forward to it and everyone wants to thrive from the opportunity and for some to get back to where they feel they belong and for a number of players to experience their first opportunity in league football.
"I'm absolutely excited about another week of strong work, so we can go in and hit the ground running and be all guns blazing for the Cheltenham game."
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The National League champions will be missing experienced trio Jamie Turley, Jobi McAnuff and James Dayton for the opener though.
Orient's captain and right-back Turley have trained individually over the past week, but winger Dayton is not expected to feature before September.
Embleton added: "Jamie Turley trained quite extensively in the week, not in the group, but by himself and done a lot more running and striking of the ball.
"There is still a bit of pain in the area where he is feeling it because it's the back end of last season when he came off at Wembley, around his groin.
"We felt, like Jobi, the rest over the summer may cure that, but it hasn't had the impact we hoped and maybe because we only had four-and-a-half weeks off.
"Now he has had that bit longer and is doing a bit more running, but with them two it is about how far we can push them."
Myles Judd was on the bench for Saturday's game although suffered a whack to the ankle which prevented him from starting.
He could get a run-out this evening when an O's XI travel to Canvey Island to go up against the Isthmian North club.
Goalkeeper Arthur Janata is expected to start along with forward Ruel Sotiriou and potentially other first-teamers while some of the club's under-18s may feature.
"The team will be very similar to Bishop's Stortford, which was a fantastic learning experience for those young players," Embleton said.
"It wasn't a great second half performance, but it was really enjoyable to see those boys put against up very good players at a level some of them will be playing at this year.
"A number of professionals will be in the team, some who need a bit more time out on the pitch alongside some of the young pros we've already seen this summer and potentially some youth-team players."