Poor Stones second half gifts Orient victory

Five hundred and ninety-five Maidstone United fans made the trip to Brisbane Road and certainly made themselves known.

The Stones fans had a welcome visitor to the crowd, Stuart Lewis sat with the fans to their delight and his song resounded around the ground.

Would the performance from the Stones be worthy of this support?

The match started well for Maidstone United who controlled possession for the first half.

The Stones were unlucky not to take the lead when Joe Pigott’s shot was saved by the legs of the Orient keeper, Tom Wraight was quickest to react on the rebound but unfortunately skied his opportunity.

The centre back pairing of Josh Hare and Alex Wynter was working well and the midfield were working hard.

Noticeably Jai Reason was not getting involved in the game, looked unfit and a little lost at sea at times.

However, with Jack Paxman and Reece Prestedge working hard this did not impact the team in the first half.

Both teams went into the break level, with Maidstone United receiving a rapturous applause from the buoyant Stones fans.

However, we know possession is not everything unless you can put the ball in the back of the net.

Second half the Stones looked to carry on where they had left off.

However, the tone of the game had changed Jai Reason still looked lost in midfield but this time it had an impact, Reece Prestedge and Jack Paxman were tiring.

Joe Pigott looked isolated up front and despite working hard was getting poor support from the midfield and wide players.

There was a clear lack of creativity.

The crossing and attacking play took a dismal turn and the Stones did not look like scoring.

The Orient capitalised by catching the Stones on the counter finishing clinically.

Maidstone United equalised but the goal was ruled offside.
Orient later killed of any Stones revival with a second clinical finish.

In the end, the Stones were soundly beaten the Orient had made Maidstone United pay for poor distribution and finishing.

If the Stones continue to play like this I can see another relegation battle, but there is still time to change things.

I believe Jay Saunders has to be braver with his selection, one-man up front does not work for the Stones. Joe Pigott is quality but he needs support alongside him.

We need to practice our crossing this was dismal and we should be focussing on this during training.

If we are going to overload the midfield Jai Reason for me looks unfit and with Harry Phipps available my preference would be to play him over Jai Reason and work with Jai on his fitness.

The Stones have so far only scored one goal in three matches and so working on our shooting is necessary. We cannot continue to waste chances like we are. Players need to at least get their shots on target and stretch the opposition goalkeeper.

Jay has a lot to work do with his players and with the Stones training daytime there are no excuses as to why these issues cannot be addressed.

With Aldershot Town on Tuesday night Jay Saunders has a small window to change things, I feel the best we can hope for is a draw based on yesterday’s performance.

As a Stones fan, we need to be the twelfth man and hope that our team can respond in a manner that is befitting of the support.

Final Score Leyton Orient 2 – 0 Maidstone United

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