Just in case you hadn't realised it our next game at Bristol Rovers takes place on Friday evening December 29th
We salute every one of the supporters who will be travelling down there in a terrific statement of commitment to the club. After the team's inept performance at Leyton on Tuesday there would be no shame at all in staying in the warm at home rather than travelling all the way to Bristol with little optimism to brave the windswept Memorial Stadium and suffer the patronising abuse of the local "gasheads"
If Leyton had been a one-off we might be able to shrug it off, but it wasn't. It followed a spineless performance at Gillingham and depressing ineptitude against Cambridge and Burton. It is no wonder that the fans on Tuesday gave vent to their dismay at the final whistle.
Steve Brown was forthright in his assessment on Charlton TV after the game:
"It is an absolute privilege to have a football career. And it doesn't matter what shirt, what crest you are sliding over your chest you're playing football for someone and you're getting paid to do it. So, you know what, if it means you've got to go another half yard, if it means you've got to take an elbow in the face or a kick to the shin or you've got to run back sixty yards when you've not got a lot left in the tank, it is the least you can do. It is the least you can do."
Meanwhile, Bristol Rovers were following up their recent away win at Bolton by beating league leaders Portsmouth.
After years of mismanagement, we don’t underestimate the challenge facing Global Football Partners nor do we expect overnight success. However, we cannot deny the possibility of a relegation struggle ahead of us or, at the very least, a struggle to avoid the club' lowest finish for 50 years (14th in 1973/4). Committed supporters like us will continue attending games for the rest of the season, getting behind whatever team is selected. Despite criticising loudly the sort of lacklustre and half-hearted defending that led to Orient's goal, we see no point in trashing the fragile confidence of our emerging young players.
Michael Appleton has called for more bravery:
"I want a performance where we’re dead brave. That we go for it and have a go – don’t play safe. If you make mistakes then make mistakes making a positive mistake rather than a negative one, taking the safe option. That’s what I’ll be looking for at Bristol."
In the meantime we are very open to suggestions as to where we might locate some positivity to see us through until May. The Women's team is one obvious answer - involved in a five way promotion tussle and still in the Cup. The under 18s recently beat Huddersfield to progress to play Bristol City in the fourth round of the FA Youth Cup next month. We hope that the January window might produce something to inspire us although we recognise that firmer foundations for a resurgence can only really be dug in the summer. We might still see Alfie May threaten long-standing scoring records. George Dobson might sign that new contract.
Please let us know any other sources of optimism you can discern at email@example.com