Omer Riza hoping Leyton Orient players can focus on pitch battles at Blackpool
PUBLISHED: 14:30 05 May 2017
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O’s manager looking to end League Two campaign with victory at Bloomfield Road tomorrow
Omer Riza hopes Leyton Orient’s players can focus on the task at hand at Blackpool on Saturday and not have to worry about the threat of more pitch protests.
The O’s final home game of the campaign last weekend was surrounded in controversy as the encounter with Colchester United only finished nearly two hours later than expected.
Orient supporters invaded the Brisbane Road pitch in the 85th minute and only left when the club announced the game had been abandoned.
The match was eventually finished in front of empty stands and Riza concedes the same could happen at Bloomfield Road with Tangerines fans not happy with owner Owen Oyston or chairman Karl Oyston.
“I am hoping Saturday goes smoothly, although I am hearing it could happen up there in Blackpool,” said Riza.
“It is not nice because you prep all week to get your team out to play and it’s just another problem that you don’t need, but if people feel they need to do it then they need to do it.”
A saving grace for Riza and the O’s squad is Blackpool can secure a place in the play-offs on Saturday, so they will not want the match to be abandoned.
Orient will hope to leave League Two on a positive note to try and provide optimism ahead of the summer.
“We will go into the Blackpool game wanting to win and I will always approach every match like that,” said Riza.
“I wanted to win against Colchester and we will go into Saturday’s match with the same mentality.”
After the 3-1 defeat to U’s, Riza alluded to the fact that some players in football don’t understand you always have to work hard.
The fitness of the O’s squad has been questioned at times with current fitness coach Simone Lucchesi se to leave in the summer.
“Jens has been out a long time this season. He has had injuries and he has not been in the squad and he has got himself up to a certain fitness level now,” said Riza.
“All these mistakes come down to inconsistency throughout the whole season in terms of every problem we have had and faced regardless of if the players are playing or training.
“I think what everyone has to understand, and even players, is that in football you have to work hard, even out of possession.
“You have to work hard in training and be physically fit and in peak condition to be able to get out on the pitch and play and maybe that is not the case at the moment.”
Regardless, Orient will aim to end their terrible campaign with a high by achieving a positive result at Blackpool.
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