O’s skipper looking for Christmas cheer
SKIPPER Stephen Purches believes that a good Christmas will pave the way for a happy New Year at Leyton Orient, writes TREVOR DAVIES. The O s travel to Brighton & Hove Albion on Boxing Day in a relegation six-pointer. Brighton are currently one place and
SKIPPER Stephen Purches believes that a good Christmas will pave the way for a happy New Year at Leyton Orient, writes TREVOR DAVIES.
The O's travel to Brighton & Hove Albion on Boxing Day in a relegation six-pointer.
Brighton are currently one place and three points below the O's in the last relegation slot and a big win for the Seagulls would see them swap places with Geraint Williams' side.
Then, it's home comforts for the rest of the holiday period, as O's entertain Southend United next Monday and Yeovil Town the following weekend.
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Southend are currently 13th, but are just three points above the O's and Yeovil are two points and three places better off than Williams' side.
"It's a massive week for us, as we play three of the sides who are close to us," admitted the Orient captain.
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"It's a strange division at the moment because there are a lot of teams with not many points between them.
"We have been in winning poitions in our last two games and we could easily have come away with six points instead of just one.
"That would have seen us go into Christmas in the top half of the table, instead we are one place above the relegation zone.
"It's important to do well against the teams who are in and around us and that's why the next week is so important for us," he added.
Orient ended a run of four successive away defeats in the league with a draw at Walsall last weekend, and Purches wants to build on that this Saturday: "It's an important game against Brighton, because our aim is to work through that tight group of clubs and get as high up the table as possible.
"A good result at Brighton will help and set us up for the two home games."
Purches, who along with fellow defender Ben Chorley, was named in the League One team of the week after the 2-2 draw at Walsall, is looking for a maximum return from the two home games during the festive period.
Although Orient lost their last game at the Matchroom to the MK Dons, they have picked up all but eight of their 23 points at Brisbane Road this season.
"We have got to make full use of the games at home," explained Purches.
"We enjoy playing at home and although the MK Dons result was disappointing, we have to keep doing the right things and if we do that, the results will come."
Orient will be looking for a spot of revenge against rivals Southend, following a 3-0 defeat at Roots Hall earlier in the season.
"We have got to take the game to them, start at a high tempo and see it out for the 90 minutes," said the O's skipper.