Saturday, 25 July 2009

It Can't Get Any Worse, Oh Wait...

Just when you think it is safe to allow a molecule of positiveness back into your mind, the pre-season campaign really kicks-off.

For those of you who haven't already been confronted by a 'friend' or attacked by a sibling that can't contain their excitement, Leyton Orient lay-ed the smackdown on Newcastle as they produced a stunning 6-1 win.

Whilst I have little optimism over the current off field affairs at the club, it appeared that the players had at least decided to knuckle down and play some football, sadly not.

The live text from this game was brought to us on the club website by Craig Hope, something fans have got very little left to cling onto.

And Hope uncannily pointed out before the match, "Kevin Nolan and Oba Martins get the game underway. Earlier sunshine has now made way with clouds gathering above Brisbane Road."

However, he couldn't possibly have predicted the storm that this cloud would contain. Newcastle were level for just four minutes of the fixture but perhaps it was just one of those games?

Live text exerts

3min - United spring an early attack down the left...


9min - This is all Orient in fairness...

23min - LEYTON ORIENT GOAL (2-0)

29min - United are on the back foot.

30min - NEWCASTLE GOAL (2-1)

36min - United are clearly buoyed by their goal and you wouldn't bet against them finding a leveller before the break.

38min - And that equaliser almost comes via the right boot of Kevin Nolan...

41min - Steven Taylor sets off on a cavalier charge from halfway, but it's keeper Jones who again thwarts the visitors.

43min - This keeper Jones is proving unbeatable from open play!


48min - Andy Carroll unleashes a fizzing 20-yard drive which is saved by Jones just inside the left-hand post - good work from Big Andy.

50min - Damien Duff's run and left-wing cross-cum-shot draws a subsequent "oooh" from the away fans as it flashes into the side-netting.

52min - Kevin Nolan comes close to netting his third of the summer with a shot which drops the wrong side of Jones' crossbar.

53min - LEYTON ORIENT GOAL (3-1)

55min - LEYTON ORIENT GOAL (4-1)

66min - Jones travels outside of the area at the expense of a free-kick. But the keeper redeems himself with a fine full-length save from Guthrie's dipping strike.

69min - Xisco rattles the opposition woodwork with a measured left-foot strike.

77min - Guthrie fizzes a rising strike inches above the frame of the goal - that was close and should have been a goal.

83min - LEYTON ORIENT GOAL (5-1)

86min - LEYTON ORIENT GOAL (6-1)

Full-time, United soundly beaten.

The score tells one hell of a horror story, but the 'highlights' perhaps tell a slightly different one. It seems the youngsters of Carroll, Guthrie, LuaLua and the like are desperate to play attacking football and when it works it works. (See Darlington 7-2)

However when it doesn't it leaves us very, very exposed at the back and, as ever, we just can't cope with it.

The team sheet provides no excuse, Krul, Beye, Colo, S. Taylor, Enrique, Jonas, Nolan, Barton, Duff and Oba were led by captain Smudge (Why not Taylor?) and that is almost certainly our strongest team in terms of experience.

All I can put this down to is a freak result, but maybe that's just because I can't bear to accept the alternative possibilities.

Ah well, friendlies don't mean anything anyway.

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