Smith wants a first chance
JIMMY SMITH left Premier League side Chelsea last week and joined Orient in a quest for first team football, WRITES TREVOR DAVIES. Smith, who spent a successful loan spell at Brisbane Road last season, still had a year on his contract to run, but decided
JIMMY SMITH left Premier League side Chelsea last week and joined Orient in a quest for first team football, WRITES TREVOR DAVIES.
Smith, who spent a successful loan spell at Brisbane Road last season, still had a year on his contract to run, but decided to quit Stamford Bridge.
Orient boss Geraint Williams was delighted and said: "Jimmy played a big part in our successful end to last season.
"He's a good character and he could have stayed at Chelsea, but he wanted first team football.
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"He felt the time was right to make a break and show that he is ready to play first team football."
The Newham-born 22-year-old has signed a two-year contract and will be a valuable addition to the squad.
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He played one Premier League game for Chelsea, against Newcastle on the final day of the 2005-06 season and spent loan spells at Queens Park Rangers, Norwich City as well as Sheffield Wednesday, before he joined the O's last season and played 16 games.
Smith admitted it was good to be back at Brisbane Road and said: "It feels like I have hardly been away. I'm glad to be back. It was an easy decision once I knew Orient were interested. I enjoyed my time here last season and the team really did well.
"The players here are great and the club is only just down the road, so it's good to be at Orient again.
"The main motivation for leaving Chelsea to come here was the fact I'd get the chance to play more first team football.
"I spoke to the manager and he told me what his ambitions were for next season and everything's looking good.
"I definitely think there's a chance of us making a push this season. If we make a good start, who knows what could happen? We need to be consistent over the season.