Matchroom Stadium - Leyton Orient
Saturday, October 10th, 2009
Vs Colchester United, League One, 3pm
By Will Thurlwell

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Being my second trip to Brisbane Road in two years, I knew what to expect. My feelings from my first outing were that of curiosity, which you would have visiting any new ground and I was obviously looking forward to somewhere I had never been before. However, this time round, my feelings were a little mixed; after my previous visit we were on the wrong end of a 2-1 score line which will put some hesitant feelings into your mind for a trip back. On the other hand, I did have a very enjoyable overall day last time, so it wasn’t all doom and gloom. The team was also on a good run of form at the time with new manager Aidy Boothroyd coming in, unbeaten in 7 so most fans were optimistic.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

My father, my uncle and I decided to take the train and tube as this is the favoured method of getting to the ground, plus it is exactly what we did the year before. We left Colchester North station to go to Stratford so we could have a meal beforehand; Wetherspoon’s is our personal favourite. We only stopped off here as it is very tricky to get a decent meal once you get to the ground. Leaving Stratford, it is one stop westbound on the Central Line and subsequently a 10 minute walk from the station to the signposted ground.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

As I said, we visited a Wetherspoon’s in Stratford (the Greengrove I think it was called) before continuing our journey to Leyton. Before we actually went to the ground though, we stopped off in a pub called ‘the Coach and Horses’ which was pretty packed out with Colchester fans; some chanting even begun in here before the match. The only trouble was the queues for getting a drink which did take a fair while so we stuck to only having one each. If there were home fans in here, I certainly couldn’t spot them so I can’t say whether they were a friendly bunch or not, I can’t imagine them being terrible though.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

Coming in to the ground for my second time, it was more or less how I remembered. Uncomfortable wooden seats on the away side with rests that dig into your back. Apart from this annoying flaw in the ground, overall it is not too shabby. We had the long away side all to ourselves for some reason even though we only brought 1000 fans, but the rest of the place was pretty full. Their modern main stand had only a few empty seats, same as the stand to the left of us, but the one on the far right seemed fairly packed out. The view is good, although there are pillars that can obstruct your view if you sit in certain seats. Overall, a decent ground but I have been to better.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc..

Colchester were on a good run of form and had won the last two games, this confidence certainly seemed to show on the pitch. We got right into the action from the word ‘go’ with a decent attack which unfortunately knocked the Orient keeper out cold after 2 minutes. We continued our pressure after their keeper was subbed but didn’t find the breakthrough in the first half. Orient knocked the ball around well and had a couple of half-chances at times but ultimately never looked like a strong threat. After the break we renewed our dominance and got the only goal of the game from a headed corner by the strong on loan striker Kayode Odejayi. We had some decent chances to double the score line but ultimately the offside flag got the better of us.

The atmosphere from the away fans was great! We continued our chanting from the first minute till the last and made some superb noise. The home fans were surprisingly quiet seeing their turnout although there was a small group of fans with a couple of drums that tried their best to get something going. Fair play to them for doing it for the whole match, but their best efforts of trying to get it to spread around the ground ultimately failed. Stewards, in my opinion, were fantastic; I didn’t see them approach anyone throughout the whole day despite many fans consistently standing. This certainly made the day more enjoyable.

I myself did not use the toilets or the kiosks so I can’t comment on the tastes nor the queues, but my dad did say that getting into the toilets was awfully tricky with the amount of people we brought along.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away was dead simple, we walked to the tube and despite nearly all the fans using this service, we got on the trains quickly and even managed to grab a couple of seats.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I thoroughly enjoyed my second trip out to Leyton Orient; it’s simple to get to, easy to find somewhere to eat (as long as you don’t search in Leyton) and a good venue to enjoy a game of football. I for one will definitely make this one to go to next year with Colchester if I can.

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