A LACK of guile in the final third was Russell Slade’s biggest criticism of the O’s performance after they fell to a 1-0 defeat against Stevenage on Tuesday.
Lucas Akins’ 23rd minute strike gave the visitors the points as Orient weren’t able to respond effectively.
It wasn’t until the closing stages that Boro began to come under threat at the back and the boss knows an improvement is needed going forward.
“It’s frustrating in the end,” he said. “We’ve driven them back and they’re defending on their own penalty spot in the last 10 to 15 minutes.
“But perhaps we lacked that little bit of guile, that streetwise-ness in terms of turning that pressure into goals.
“Sometimes the simple ball is better than the long ball and the selection of the pass is important. Sometimes we didn’t make the right selection in order to get ourselves in a better position to score a goal.
“You have to give your opposition some credit for coming here, scoring that early goal and making it very difficult for you.
“We know Stevenage won a lot of games last season 1-0 and we knew it would be difficult to break down.
“It was there for us to break down, we did our very best but we lacked that bit of guile to do something that was important – score a goal.”
After making a poor start last year, Slade does not want a repeat and he could have Kevin Lisbie back for Saturday’s match against Hartlepool after the striker sat out on Tuesday with a tight hamstring.
Slade added: “We’ve worked so incredibly hard, we have to keep our heads up and be positive as we go into the next game.
“Losing again makes you feel sick, but you have to be strong and bounce back, that’s what it’s all about in football.
“There’s a chance Kev will be back for the weekend too. It’s certainly not as severe as Scott Cuthbert so we’re hopeful.”