Leicester City an inspiration for Leyton Orient reveals teenager Josh Koroma
PUBLISHED: 12:00 10 March 2017
Simon O'Connor Photography
The O’s squad are using Foxes great escape during the 2014/15 Premier League season as motivation for their own survival bid
Josh Koroma has revealed the Leyton Orient players are using Leicester City’s great escape as motivation to fight off relegation from League Two this season.
The Foxes were seven points from safety in the Premier League with only nine games to play during the 2014/15 campaign and looked odds-on to go down.
But Leicester managed to stay up after winning seven times in the last two months of the season and O’s are hoping to do something similar despite it looking a tough task.
“Everyone believes we can stay up and there are still 11 games left,” said Koroma after scoring a hat-trick in their 4-0 win at Newport County.
“The year before Leicester won the title, they won seven of their last nine matches to stay up, so there is no reason why we can’t do that.”
It is a tall order for O’s to avoid relegation with the east Londoners 23rd and five points behind Notts County, who are a place above them.
But Danny Webb’s young squad gave themselves a fighting chance with an emphatic victory at Newport which boosted confidence and their goal difference.
Koroma had failed to find the net for Orient before Saturday, but scored three times in South Wales to hand them a memorable win.
The 18-year-old had to face the media for the first time after, but, just as on the pitch, belied his young age by talking with maturity.
One member of the press bizarrely asked Koroma if he would like to follow in the footsteps of Harry Kane by coming through the ranks at O’s and making his mark.
Pulling a puzzled expression, the youngster replied: “I’m just trying to think about the here and now. The main aim is to help us stay up and score goals.”
Grimsby Town are the next challenge for Orient and Webb will hope to halt the O’s poor run of form at home this weekend.
The east Londoners have lost their last five games at Brisbane Road and are yet to win a single point on home turf this year.
“Hopefully we can carry on playing well and the results can start to come after this good win,” said Koroma.
“If the chances keep coming my way I’ll hopefully finish them, but we will just have to see if this form carries on.”
All Orient fans would love to see Koroma hit a purple patch now, but you have to take the good with the bad when it comes to youngsters.
Webb has warned several times that one brilliant performance may be followed by a poor display as teenagers are going to lack consistency.
But they were all excellent last weekend and hopefully they can replicate that again when the mid-table Mariners visit on Saturday.
Koroma and the rest of his young team-mates will approach the match like any other and presumably play the same way too.
The four teenagers who started for O’s at Newport – Koroma, Sam Dalby, goalscorer Steven Alzate and Myles Judd – were constantly linking up and hurting the Exiles.
Orient’s hat-trick hero took the headlines, but Alzate and Dalby were excellent and stood up brilliantly to Newport’s physical approach.
The teens have no fear and it has been a breath of fresh air to watch.
Koroma said: “I just turn up and play. I don’t like watching other teams because I end up focusing too much on them and forgetting about myself – that makes me play bad.”
It worked for the O’s attacker on Saturday and long may it continue.