Embleton has ‘strong idea’ of starting XI for opener
- Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo
The O’s concluded pre-season with a 2-1 win over a Norwich City XI this afternoon
Ross Embleton watched his Leyton Orient players round off a tough summer with a hard-fought victory over a Norwich City XI today and now has a great understanding of who will start against Cheltenham Town on Saturday.
The O's came from a goal down to win 2-1 with Lee Angol and Josh Wright finding the net, but it was some of the substitutes who made a real impact.
James Brophy was his usual lively self and proved a constant threat while midfielder Dale Gorman put himself about and James Alabi and Matt Harrold caused problems for City's defence.
Asked if he knows his starting team for the League Two opener against Cheltenham, Embleton replied: "I've got a strong idea.
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"The changes we made today and when we made them were done to give people the opportunity to stake a claim to be in the starting team against Cheltenham.
"It's a very unusual position for me to be in and a new one, but one I am looking forward to and to pick a side to go out and get a result."
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At half time it looked like O's would suffer their first pre-season defeat of the summer, but they fought back well.
Orient controlled possession much better in the second period and notably had more intent when on the ball.
It enabled them to register a fifth victory of the summer from seven first-team games, but the real stuff starts in E10 on Saturday when the Robins visit.
"Some of the performances have suggested (we are ready) and next week we will work more on what our team looks like when we have possession," Embleton said.
"I've been quite pleased with the way we have defended and the work ethic and the work rate the boys have put in over pre-season. We feel ready, but we have to go out and prove it."
The National League champions are still actively looking to strengthen their squad, but the O's interim head coach doesn't expect anything to be done before the competitive campaign gets underway.
Embleton added: "How soon we will get new arrivals I don't know. It's something we are continuing to strive to do.
"I've said it before over the summer, but we've gone from being the big boys (in the National League) and able to go and get players we want, when we want to now being bottom of the pile (in the Football League) and having to wait for other people to make decisions in order for us to get the people we want.
"The group have come on well and we've had a good pre-season and I'm very happy with the group we have, but at the same time we need to pad the squad out a bit more in terms of players who will impact the group.
"I don't want to sign a player just for everyone to see we have signed a player, I want a player to come in and effect the group and someone who will make an impact on the pitch, so we need to take our time to make sure we get the right one, but the sooner we do it, the better."