With a new owner at the doorstep of Brisbane Road, the question is; How well do we want Orient to do?
I paid a fair amount of money to watch Dagnall miss that penalty at Wembley back in May. But being there, and knowing that some of that cash ended up with the club, made it well worth it. When the disappointment had worn off I expected a pre-season a little bit different than the one before. Success on field meaning that, instead of speculating about who would replace that half a squad of released players, it was more a case of which players are going to be picked up by bigger clubs. Boy was I wrong!
Someone with money wants to buy Orient. Words like investing in the squad, taking the club forward, are flying about. Question is how far do we, as fans, want to go?
I would have loved seeing Orient in the Championship even though a season like Yeovil’s was the most probable outcome. With a rich Italian throwing money at the problem of having a small ground and a limited fan base, staying up after promotion should be much less of a problem. But the things that drew me to Orient in the first place could actually be in danger of going away.
Even though I love English football, the Premiership never did it for me. I wanted another experience and found it with Orient. Great atmosphere, jaded fans that knew the reality of their club and therefore appreciated success when it happened. Firmly at home in the community with players and staff still regular people that you could interact with. Not some far off spaceship of a club with everyone involved believing they are somehow larger than life.
I know I’m not alone in looking for this. Hell, Adam Michie even wrote a great book about his search for that elusive feeling. That buzz you get watching football surrounded by other fans that get it! It’s not about world-class players showing of great skills. It’s about regular players who at rare moments produce a world-class move.
So I’m not really afraid of a new owner coming in, making a mess of things and then walk away. I believe Orient would survive that. What scares me is a Chairman that achieves all the goals he made for himself when he bought the club. When the first fixture of the upcoming season is a London derby against Arsenal. That’s frightening because I’m not sure my Orient would survive that.
There is a great Swedish word, lagom. It’s hard to translate but in one word it sums up something that is just right. Not too much, not too little, not too awful, not too successful. It’s lagom.
With possibly big changes at the horizon I think every Orient fans needs to think about where in the League pyramid Orient’s lagom is. Your answer to this question should give a clear indication about how you feel about Hearn leaving and Becchetti coming in. Do you like being called Little Leyton Orient or is your aspirations larger than that?
And, if anyone’s answer to the question of lagom is League Three, I will personally seek you out and slap you.