Leyton Orient confident wins will come insists defiant hitman Paul McCallum ahead of Cheltenham Town test
PUBLISHED: 10:00 24 February 2017
Simon O'Connor Photography
Top goalscorer hails the Orient fans and discusses how Danny Webb has the squad focusing on themselves and not the opposition
Leyton Orient’s top goalscorer Paul McCallum believes they can win their League Two relegation six-pointer against Cheltenham Town this weekend, but urged the squad to try and improve again.
The 23-year-old captained the O’s last Saturday, but couldn’t prevent them suffering a 3-2 defeat to fellow strugglers Notts County – a result which leaves them 23rd.
Danny Webb’s side showed more character and fight to come from two goals down to level, but the Magpies nicked the points and it increases the importance of Saturday’s clash with the Robins, who sit in 21st place.
McCallum, who is expected to lead the line for O’s again this weekend, said: “We just need to focus on improving what we did well against Notts County.
“We need to keep the ball, try to get it wide and create more chances. It is about time our luck changed and we start getting the results we deserve.
“Everybody in the changing room is confident we can, I’m confident and obviously the gaffer is too.”
Having suffered unlucky home defeats to Carlisle United and Morecambe at the start of this month, Orient got some reward at Yeovil Town (1-1) and Plymouth Argyle (a 3-2 win last Tuesday).
When Teddy Mezague equalised with nine minutes left at Brisbane Road it seemed Webb’s team were on course for another positive result.
But O’s makeshift defence came unstuck and Jon Stead pounced to consign them to a fourth consecutive home defeat in 2017.
Orient will believe that run can end on Saturday, although they will expect another close and nervy encounter up against an improving Cheltenham team.
The Robins beat Yeovil Town last weekend, but have suffered defeats on the road at Stevenage and Notts County this month.
Although Orient will look into some of the strengths of Cheltenham this week, they have benefitted from turning the focus on themselves since Webb’s appointment.
While the O’s haven’t always got the result their performances have deserved, this team now plays with no fear.
McCallum added: “We’ve stopped watching videos of the other team, which I believe is the right thing to do.
“Everybody is pretty similar in this league except for the likes of Doncaster Rovers and a few others.
“We know pretty much what to expect, so during the week it is all about what we are going to do and how we are going to win the game.
“Now we are focusing on how we can affect the match rather than what the opposition are going to do to us.”
The Orient fans were completely behind the team on Saturday as the third biggest crowd of the season at Brisbane Road acted as the 12th man.
It wasn’t enough to help O’s get over the line against Notts County, but McCallum believes they have a huge role to play this season.
He added: “It always helps to have the fans on your side. I don’t think the supporters understand how much it means.
“When you make a mistake and you hear groans, it does affect players and because we have a young team, if they do that and the fans are on their back it would be hard to take.
“But they are supporting us even if we make mistakes and they are applauding us off after losing.
“I think they know we are going to be all right and can see we are giving our best, so hopefully we can stay up for them.”