Aston Villa boss Smith was the reason McMahon ended up playing for Leyton Orient
PUBLISHED: 16:00 08 June 2020
Former Leyton Orient midfielder Daryl McMahon revealed Aston Villa manager Dean Smith was the reason he ended up at the club.
The 36-year-old joined the O’s in 2004 after playing alongside Smith at Port Vale with the latter having recently left the Brisbane Road outfit.
However, Smith did soon return to east London to become assistant manager to the club’s current director of football Martin Ling.
“I really enjoyed my time at Port Vale and that started my journey to Leyton Orient because Dean Smith was playing for Port Vale and we got on really well,” McMahon told the Nathan Holt Podcast.
“He kind of set me up with a move to Leyton Orient and then he followed me down there not too long after.
“I didn’t have any first-team football, I had a little bit at Torquay United, and nine or 10 appearances in League One for Port Vale.
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“I could have stayed at Port Vale, but I wanted to move back down to London again, and it was a great opportunity to prove myself at Leyton Orient as it was a great club with lots of great people.”
McMahon was part of the Orient team which won promotion in the 2005/06 season and made 33 appearances along the way.
He had played 24 times the season prior to that, but fell out of favour during the 2006/07 season, only making eight appearances, before joining Notts County on loan.
“It was a great year, we weren’t the best team, we had a fantastic team spirit and not many players from that team went on to do big things,” he added.
“In League Two at the time you had players like Nathan Tyson who went on to play at Nottingham Forest, Junior Ogogo, and Roger Johnson at Wycombe Wanderers.
“There were teams in the division with better individuals than we maybe had, but we were a very good team, and the way we went up with the last kick of the game was great. We relegated Oxford and we went up so it was an incredible day.”
McMahon made a total of 65 appearances for Orient, scoring five goals, in what was a pretty successful spell in his career.
He is now hoping to lead Dagenham & Redbridge into the Football League as manager.
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