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Leyton Orient v Brentford fan's view: We still have a good chance of reaching the Championship
Well I think it's fair to say we blew it on Saturday. The O's had a wonderful chance to make a statement to the football world that we were serious about getting automatic promotion at the end of the season and we contrived to capitulate against ten man Brentford.
What a contrast from our away game with them back in September. I remember then returning from West London having witnessed our eighth consecutive league win and saddo that I am, staying up till three in the morning, watching a complete re-run of the entire match I'd recorded on my Sky planner.
Last Saturday however upon returning home late afternoon, my first job was to press the delete button on the recorded game I'd watched at lunch-time.
It has to be said however, that the general atmosphere amongst fans in the Supporter's Club after the game, considering the result was remarkably upbeat.
Possibly that was because the sun was beating down and it was a lovely afternoon to enjoy a couple of pints with fellow O's (and the mood was lightened when we got score updates from the Hammers game at Stoke) but I think we all realised that despite the 90 minutes we had just witnessed nothing could take away from what has been a pretty remarkable season thus far for the boys from Brisbane Road.
Record after record has been beaten starting with the eight consecutive wins at the start, then scoring in 18 consecutive away games and only last Tuesday equalling our record of 11 away league victories in a single campaign.
We've won at Port Vale for the first time in 57 years, Colchester for the first time in 63 years and Brentford for the first time in 20 years .
So we might have to settle for the play-offs but bearing in mind the so called 'bigger' clubs that we are well above in the league, like MK Dons, Bristol City and Coventry, that's a fantastic achievement from the man who doesn't have to use a comb and his players this season.
We've been neck and neck all year with Wolves, a club which started the season with a £17m pound parachute payment and who could afford to pay Coventry £750,000 for Leon Clarke in the transfer window, whilst we at the same time were getting Chris Dagnall from Barnsley on a free transfer.
We're well above Peterborough who paid Watford a small fortune for Britt Assombalonga at the start of the season, while we've got an Irishman (who used to be not very good, but now is alright) and a super Jamaican called Kev up front both of whom were freebies, who have between them notched 32 goals.
If we do have to settle for the play-offs I don't think any of the other three teams involved would fancy playing us and providing we steer clear of injuries and suspensions for the vital games we would still have a good chance of ending up in the Championship come May 27th.
Ok, so we've lost our last two play-off finals but at least this time round we haven't got Tommy Taylor to muck us up with some bizarre tactics. In Russ we trust and with 30,000 backing us at Wembley I'm confident we would end the day looking forward to trips to Fulham, Leeds and West Ham in the Championship next season.
The O's in the second tier of English football for the first time in 32 years? Now that would give us all an enjoyable summer.
Up the O's
Martin is author of '60 Great Leyton Orient Matches of the Tijuana Taxi Era', available now on Amazon priced £10.34.
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