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O’s midfielder Clay says threat of strike duo put Fylde on the back foot

PUBLISHED: 15:00 27 March 2019

O's Craig Clay (pic Simon O'Connor)

O's Craig Clay (pic Simon O'Connor)

Simon O'Connor Photography

Leyton Orient midfielder Craig Clay says the threat of having Macaulay Bonne and Josh Koroma up top helped them put AFC Fylde on the back foot from the off.

Leyton Orient's Marvin Ekpiteta celebrates with Jobi McAnuff and Macauley Bonne (pic: Simon O'Connor).Leyton Orient's Marvin Ekpiteta celebrates with Jobi McAnuff and Macauley Bonne (pic: Simon O'Connor).

The O’s sealed a comfortable 3-1 win over The Coasters at Mill Farm earlier this season thanks to a brace from Koroma and another strike from Bonne.

And 26-year-old Clay felt that allowed the hosts to attack them early on.

It paid off as defender Marvin Ekpiteta and Zimbabwean International Bonne both netted in the opening 23 minutes to guide them to a 2-0 win at the Breyer Group Stadium.

“We knew that they were going to be scared of Koroma and Macca from the game up there earlier this season.

“Koroma scored two great goals and Macca scored to rip them apart, so we knew they would be worried about that.

“Brophs (James Brophy) with his pace and picking the ball up, we knew that was going to be a problem for them, and that came through in the first half hour.”

The former Grimsby Town man described the performance as professional and felt they were never in any danger of conceding.

“It was professional, efficient, and I think you could tell from the first five minutes when Koroma was getting at them, Macca was getting at that, they were there to be beaten.

“We took our chances and from then I don’t remember them breaking us down, I think they had one header in the second-half that flashed just wide, but apart from that they might have had a bit of the ball but we were solid.

“I never thought we were going to concede.”

Orient lost defender Jamie Turley due to a hamstring injury in the 37th minute and had to be replaced by James Dayton – meaning Brophy moved back into the right wing back role.

“I think you could say we’ve had a bit of bad luck with injuries in general, certain people going out at certain times, when they just come into form.

“Brophs is used to attacking so when he got taken out the attacking role to play a bit more defensive I’m sure he wouldn’t have fully liked it, but he’s done the job for the team.

“There are a lot of people that have moved around, that’s the team we are and the characters we’ve got in our team.”

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