Orient boss will be given time to turn things around
Hearn backs Slade to get it right
Orient manager Russell Slade will be given more time to turn things around despite the club being rooted to the foot of League One.
The O’s are without a win in nine league games and face a daunting trip to unbeaten Huddersfield Town on Saturday.
But the O’s boss remains defiant:“We don’t want sympathy, we don’t want to feel sorry for ourselves and we need to bounce back,” he said.
There were signs of an improvement at Blackburn Rovers on Tuesday night, when the O’s gave their Premier League hosts a fright before bowing out of the Carling Cup 3-2.
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“We need to address our League results and tonight’s performance was much more positive,” said Slade.
“I think it’s a matter of time before we turn that corner, we’re not as bad as our league position suggests.”
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Orient’s season has been wrecked by injuries to key players and the manager is convinced things will improve as the injury list eases.
“We need to show a little more mettle, we need those fighters out there who are going to help us turn this corner,” he added.
After their awful start the bookmakers have installed Slade as the next managerial casualty in League One.
Victor Chandler makes him the clear favourite at 7-4 to leave his post, with Scunthorpe’s Alan Knill quoted at 5-1.
But Orient chairman Barry Hearn is set to prove the bookies wrong and has given his under-fire manager a huge vote of confidence and is backing Slade to turn things around.
“Managers are led by results, but in our type of business we expect loyalty and we expect to give loyalty,” he said.
After Slade guided Orient to a seventh-place finish last season and to the last 16 of the FA Cup, Hearn was desperate to keep him at Brisbane Road.
He refused Championship side Barnsley the opportunity to speak to Slade about their managerial vacancy at Oakwell.
“I didn’t want Russell to go to Barnsley and he stayed. I will therefore return the compliment,” said Hearn.
“We have a good team, a great manager and if we all pull together then I’m confident we’ll be okay.”
Hearn has a reputation for sticking by his managers and will give Slade more time.
Last season’s performances means he has plenty of good will left in the bank and considering the injury problems he has had to encounter this term means there will be no knee-jerk reaction from the Orient board.
The fact that he was refused permission to talk to Barnsley is also likely to buy him some extra time.
Skipper Stephen Dawson has already acknowledged that it’s the players who should take the blame for the club’s poor start.
And the onus will fall on them to deliver during the weeks ahead. The majority of the squad will be out of contract at the end of the season and so it’s not just the manger’s job that could end up on the line if results don’t improve.