'Nice feeling to miss a game and still stay top of the league' (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Leyton Orient fan's view: Unfamiliar territory for O's supporters
The start of the season has been unfamiliar territory for O's fans.
Of course everyone is bored of talking about our record breaking start. I kid. Even though we’ve topped the table early in the season as recently as 2007, no Orient team has ever won its first five league games (not to mention unbeaten in 90 minutes over an additional three cup games). The feel-good factor at Brisbane Road has reached record levels for September!
With the success has come unfamiliar tests and challenges. One of the advantages of being a fan of a League One team is not being at the mercy of Sky schedulers and the international calendar. Already our season has been interrupted by both.
Ironically last weekend’s unwelcome momentum interrupting international break came after a cluster of four games in two weeks that could have stretched the O's small squad. However, they showed no ill effects from the 120 minutes played against Hull as they went on to grab a win at Colchester and then trounced Gillingham in the JPT.
Nothing refreshes the legs like a win and everyone would have been eager to get stuck into Notts County last weekend. However, the international ambitions of Northern Ireland, Trinidad and Tobago and Sierra Leone took precedence over a League One fixture and the players were left kicking their heels when I am sure they’d rather be playing. Though it was a disappointment for the fans too, it was a nice feeling that our start has been so good that we could miss a game and still stay top of the league.
Hopefully the same will be true a week on Saturday when Orient will again find themselves without a game because Sky have decreed that the derby at Brentford will be played on the Monday night in front of their cameras.
No doubt they hoped it would be a top of the table clash but the Bees have dropped down the table and will be aiming simply to keep in contention. The money that Sky pumps into the game comes at a price though - and it is usually fans that have to pay it as games are constantly switched, in this case at short notice.
A group of Orient fans had booked a boat to take them to the west end of the capital and arrive at Griffin Park in style. The cancellation literally left them high and dry, with an invoice for a boat that no longer has anywhere to go.
Step in Barry Hearn who has offered to cover the costs incurred by the 100 or so fans who had intended to travel by river. The success is nice and the relative novelties of TV games and international breaks are entertaining. But supporting Orient is made special by feeling you are part of a tight nit community club that shares the successes and failures together.
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