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PREVIEW: Hendon ahead of Stevenage test

1 January 2016

Orient Head Coach Ian Hendon is eyeing an all-round team performance against Stevenage tomorrow as they look to start the new year with three points.

The O’s lost for the first time in seven games against Bristol Rovers on Monday, and though still disappointed with the defeat, Hendon is keen for the hard work on the training ground this week to pay off with victory at the Lamex Stadium.

“There was nothing in the game really, we thought the first goal was a handball and we spoke to the referee’s assessor after and he said it shouldn’t have been given, but goals change games,” Hendon told leytonorient.com.

“The first one shouldn’t have been given, but I am not excusing the way we defended it after that – it wasn’t good enough.  The second one is an unstoppable effort from where he has hit it from and it’s gone in. It was difficult for Alex to do anything about that – it’s one of those.

“You look at the statistics from the game and everything was fairly even – possession shots on target, shots off target, corners – but it’s a game of fine lines."

He added: “We have done our post-match review of the game as always and we are aware of certain things that happened in the game were not good and we have to correct that. We have done a lot of work in training on certain areas and we hope to have more of an all-round performance against Stevenage.”

Prior to the festive fixtures, tomorrow’s hosts had been unbeaten in their last six League Two games, however, they have suffered defeats to Barnet (2-0) and Dagenham & Redbridge (3-1) on Boxing Day and December 28 respectively.

“Stevenage had a good run pre-Christmas where they had put together a good run of results,” added Hendon.

“They are a big, strong side and as always are we are expecting a tough game, especially away from home. We want to get the new year off to a good start, but so will Stevenage so it is all about who performs the best on the day.”

The O’s go into the game in ninth spot in League Two, though just three points separate Mansfield n 11th and Carlisle United in the final Play-Off spot.

With that in mind Hendon is eager to start the new year with a positive result, before potentially strengthening his squad in the January transfer window.

“We are still in the mix and a couple of wins would make things look a lot rosier – we aren’t far off,” he added.

“We are aware we have to get a couple of players in, without a doubt and that is something we have to do over the next couple of weeks.”

Lloyd James once again misses out and the midfielder will remain out for a period of six-eight weeks with an Achilles injury, worse that first feared by the O’s after picking up the injury in the 1-1 home draw with Yeovil Town

Jean Yves-M’voto has also picked up a groin injury in training and is a doubt for the clash, while defender Mathieu Baudry serves the second game of his three-match ban following his sending-off against Portsmouth

“Lloyd looks set to be out for around six-eight weeks. That’s the estimate on that one so that is very disappointing and Jean pulled out of training on Thursday with a slight groin injury so we will have to see how he is,” he said.



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