Bitty performance but a good return, says Fleet boss

Daryl McMahon saw his side’s four-game winning streak come to an end but the Fleet extended their unbeaten run to five and recent form on the road has pleased the manager.

“It was a bitty performance, a bitty game,” he told BBC Radio Kent’s Charles Webster. “It wasn’t a good game really, there wasn’t many opportunities in it, not many chances, lots of balls into the boxes from both of us but no real killer quality. It’s a very good point. We’ve been to Orient, Hartlepool, Halifax, all away in the last five games and we’ve dropped two points. I think that’s a good return from us.

“I thought we had a great chance with Luke Coulson that he hit wide in the first half. I thought if we’d went two [up] then we probably would have seen it through and we might have turned the crowd a little bit at that time. It was a great bit of skill for us to score and then we switch off and it’s a poor goal from our perspective.”

Despite Leyton Orient’s place in the league table, they clearly have some decent players and under new manager Justin Edinburgh have added a little more steel; as such McMahon felt his side coped well in front of a 4,000+ crowd.

“Orient are a decent side, Justin has done a good job since he’s come in,” McMahon said. “He had a great month last month in terms of league performances and obviously had the loss at Dover last week. But you can see they’re hard to beat, they’re compact, they’re tight, they defend deep and [Macauley] Bonne’s an outlet for them. Brophy’s another one, he played in League One for Swindon. This is a big football club and we’re coming here, taking a point and we’re happy with it. That’s four across the season against Orient and I think it’s a good result for our club.”

New signing Norman Wabo didn’t make an appearance but that was more down to Fleet’s ill luck in terms of the injury to Sam Magri than any tactical reason.

“We couldn’t get him on after the injury to Sam Magri, I thought we needed to shore up midfield a little bit,” McMahon explained. “He trained well this week and hopefully we can get him out next Saturday. We didn’t plan to go to a back three and I think it killed us a little bit. I thought we defended really well as a four and it doesn’t look good with Sam either so we’ll see what happens.”

Fleet were due to have another blank weekend next Saturday due to Gateshead’s involvement in an FA Trophy semi-final but McMahon hinted that the originally scheduled league game against ourselves could still go ahead. Gateshead’s opponents in the Trophy have still to be decided with Spennymoor Town’s replay versus Bromley called off last week because of the snow and their pitch still likely to pose a problem this week. That would mean the Trophy semi-final could be pushed further back in the calendar.

“I don’t think Spennymoor’s pitch is playable apparently,” McMahon said. “So that’s going to be sorted out Monday or Tuesday. We’ll have a game anyway. If we don’t have a league game, we’ll play [a friendly against] Eastbourne Borough at home.”

Listen to the full interview below.


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