Townsend’s comfort for struggling Orient

ONE crumb of comfort for Orient as they start the New Year in the drop zone, is that flying winger Andros Townsend looks set to return and help them in their bid to stave off relegation, writes TREVOR DAVIES. The Tottenham youngster has been one of Orien

ONE crumb of comfort for Orient as they start the New Year in the drop zone, is that flying winger Andros Townsend looks set to return and help them in their bid to stave off relegation, writes TREVOR DAVIES.

The Tottenham youngster has been one of Orient's star performers during the first half of the season, but his loan spell finishes at the end of December, which means he will be unavailable for Saturday's vital clash with Yeovil.

But O's boss Geraint Williams is keen to hang on to the winger and the 18-year-old is happy to stay.

Spurs could keep Townsend at White Hart Lane, or opt to send him out on loan with another club, but the most likely outcome is that he will return to The Matchroom.


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After Monday's home defeat by Southend, Williams admitted he was hoping to extend the deal: "As it stands at the moment, we're still working on that," he said.

"There are a few irons in the fire and we will see what we can pull out."

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But all the indications are that Townsend will return in January and the player is happy to continue his soccer education at the O's.

"I don't mind coming back to be honest," said Townsend and the youngster expects a decision to be made within a couple of weeks.

"I'm due to go back to Spurs and then review the options. There is a possibility I could come back here."

Townsend, who has made 17 league starts for the O's, plus five from the bench, expects a decision on his future to be made quickly. "I have to go back to Spurs and then a decision will be made in the middle of January," he said.

Townsend has enjoyed his time at Orient and added: "I have been playing regularly and playing well. I feel I have improved a lot and hopefully I will be back."

Certainly Townsend would love the chance to help pull O's away from danger.

"I don't want to leave them when they are in the bottom four," added the Spurs youngster, who is surprised by the club's plight.

"There are some good players here. Ex-Premiership players like Sean Thornton and Jimmy (Smith), who was at Chelsea. Jase (Jason Demetriou), Scottie (McGleish) and Jarv (Ryan Jarvis) at Norwich. They just need to start gelling as a team."

While Townsend will be high on Williams' wish-list, the O's boss hinted that he may also be looking to strengthen his defence.

With the transfer window about to open, Williams admits he will be looking for reinforcements.

"We will have a look, I've been making a few phone calls," he said.

"I've got a few irons in the fire. I don't think there's pots and pots (of money), but we will see what we can do."

When asked where he felt the side needed strengthening, he added: "The priority would seem to be at the back because we're conceding too many goals. I'd like to score more goals, but we can't keep conceding two a game."

However, with big summer signing James Scowcroft yet to make an impression, Orient have relied too heavily on veteran hitman Scott McGleish for goals. Another striker is also needed and O's could be prepared to take a punt on French forward Jonathan Tehoue.

He has been training with the club and played in the recent reserve team game against Crawley.

The 25-year-old has played top-flight football in France, Belgium and Turkey and was linked with a move to Huddersfield Town last season and would give Williams another striking option.

One boost for Williams is that he should have more players available for Saturday's vital clash with Yeovil.

Charlie Daniels (ankle) and Ryan Jarvis (illness), were both ruled out of Monday's match with Southend after fitness checks, but should be available for the weekend.

Sean Thornton will be in contention after a one-game ban and Williams will also be hoping skipper Stephen Purches recovers from illness, but Ben Chorley is suspended and Townsend unavailable, until a decision is made on his future.

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