Danny Webb wants Leyton Orient to play without fear against Morecambe
10:00 07 February 2017
Simon O'Connor Photography
The Shrimps travel down from Lancashire for pivotal fixture in the battle to stay up this season
Danny Webb wants his Leyton Orient squad to continue playing without fear when Morecambe visit Brisbane Road for a crucial match in the battle to avoid relegation from League Two this season.
The O’s suffered a fifth consecutive defeat on Saturday, at home to Carlisle United, to remain 23rd in the table.
But Orient produced a spirited display and never gave up, even when they were losing 2-1, and Webb is hoping that will continue.
He said: “I’ve said to the players whoever you are up against – they are all League Two teams. Whether it is Pompey in front of 18,000 or Morecambe in front of 1,200 they are all from the same division.
“Some budgets are bigger than others and expectations too. Our expectations at the start of the season were to get promoted and now it is to stay up, so that’s how it goes.
“We can take heart from Saturday, but I’m certainly not getting carried away and that’s what I’m trying to get into the players.
“Everything will be positive from me because I’ve got to do my best to get the lads playing with a little bit less fear.
“If the fans can support them like they have on Saturday then it gives even grown men a little lift.”
After disappointing defeats to Exeter City, Barnet and Mansfield in January, Webb was pleased O’s produced a response against the Cumbrians.
It wasn’t enough to earn Orient any reward, but the most important fixtures this month are against the likes of Morecambe, Notts County and Cheltenham Town.
The Brisbane Road boss is now hoping his relatively inexperienced squad can kick on following their narrow defeat to Carlisle.
Webb added: “Notts County lost at Accrington Stanley on Saturday and obviously Kevin (Nolan) has gone in there and it isn’t easy to turn things around.
“It doesn’t always work and even though it’s a cliché, that’s football. It is the nuttiest professional around and things happen that you don’t expect.
“At the minute everyone expects us to get thumped and we showed against Carlisle we’re not going to take it like that.”
While Orient went down with a fight on Saturday, the goals they conceded occurred because the hosts switched off.
Sam Sargeant produced a fine save to prevent Jamie Devitt’s free kick going in, but nobody tracked Gary Liddle’s run and he tapped home.
It was a similar story for Carlisle’s second as O’s young goalkeeper denied George Waring, but Jamie Proctor was on hand to head in the rebound.
“It was a decent save for the first and it is a free header for the second,” said Webb, when asked about the goals Orient conceded.
“If I’ve been here a year or two and built this team together, I’d be asking why somebody hasn’t tracked the run.
“But I just have to take it easy and bit by bit because we haven’t got three or four games left, we have quite a few and we have to hope the results turn around.”
Webb will see tonight as a chance to halt O’s poor run in 2017 and move away from the relegation zone with County just one point ahead of them.