O’s head coach Ian Hendon admitted it was ‘almost certain to happen’ after finding out the 2015-16 Sky Bet League Two season with a home game against his former side Barnet, when the fixtures were revealed this morning.
Hendon spent a number of years with the Bees both as a player and a manager, while the fixture will also see striker Kevin Lisbie make a quick return to the Matchroom Stadium having joined the newly-promoted side earlier this month.
And on the fixtures, Hendon told leytonorient.com: “You always look out for a few fixtures in particular and to have Barnet first up at home is a great fixture. It’s two good sets of fans and I am sure it will be a great atmosphere on the opening day.
“I also know their manager Martin Allen very well from my time at Barnet and it will be nice to lock horns with him once again.
“Looking back at this division in years gone by you have had the likes of Rochdale, Bury and Carlisle. Although there’s still some travelling to be done it is not as bad as it has been in the past.”
The festive fixtures see the O’s welcome Portsmouth to the Matchroom Stadium, before a trip to Teddy Sheringham’s Stevenage – another two fixtures Hendon is looking forward to in particular.
“Portsmouth is always going to be a big game in this division and to have them visit us on Boxing Day will make it an extra special occasion, hopefully in front of a packed out stadium.
“I was looking out for the Stevenage fixtures as well with Teddy now in charge there. We know each other well from our time at West Ham and I am sure that will be another good game.
“We all know where we want to be going into the Yeovil game on the final day of the season, but we have got to take one game at a time. Those games are a long way off, but I am really excited to get the season underway.”
Orient were drawn away to MK Dons in the first round of the Capital One Cup yesterday, on a date to be confirmed, and while admitting it will be a tough test, knows the pressure will be on the on the night.
“I am aware of our last result against MK Dons last season, but it will be all about what happens on the night,” he added.
“It is a tough test and they have done really well to get promotion, but all the pressure is on them. We will be taking every game seriously this season and hopefully we can come out on top.”
For the full fixture list, which is subject to change, click here.