ORIENT defender and captain Nathan Clarke was named as the Player of the Year at the Leyton Orient Player of the Year Awards at the Dorchester Hotel on Monday evening.
Clarke has been ever present for the O’s in the League this season, starting all 45 games to date and was praised for his leadership and courageous performances by the Orient chairman Barry Hearn who presented him with the award.
His co-defender Elliot Omozusi was a big winner on the night as he scooped two awards for the Community Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year. The community prize was richly deserved for Omozusi who was a runner up at the Football League Awards for the same prize having dedicated a vast amount of effort to working with young people in the area to mentor them about life decisions and sharing with them his own experiences having spent time in prison before rebuilding his life and football career over the past 12 months. On the pitch too he has been sensational in the left back spot which he has made his own this campaign making 46 appearances in all competitions thus far.
Moses Odubajo was presented with the Young Player of the Year for the second year running as he continues to develop and impress in an O’s shirt having scored 10 in 53 appearances for the O’s this campaign.
Charlie Grainger was named the Youth Team Player of the Year to cap a fine season for the young goalkeeper who picked up his first England cap in March when he played for the England U18s team against Croatia back in March.
David Mooney was recognised with a special award for reaching 20 goals in a season and was presented with his trophy by O’s legend Peter Kitchen – the last Orient player to hit 20 League goals in a season, whilst Dean Cox was the winner of the Goal of the Year for his strike against Gillingham at home following a glorious team move over 20 passes, as the near 400 in attendance voted for the winner on the night from a selection of O’s goals that were shown on the big screen. You can watch the video here
There were also special prizes for Errol McKellar and Sandy Risley for Outstanding Contributions to the football club. Errol has worked as a youth coach with the club since 1997 and is a much-loved member of the local community, along with Sandy the club’s former fitness coach who has been a brilliant servant of the club and is still a regular at the O’s games.
As well as the awards there was entertainment from the likes of comedian Bob Mills, as well as an auction and other fundraising and we will more reaction, photos and videos to follow on www.leytonorient.com