Leyton Orient hand Harrold first-team reins following Jackett exit

Matt Harrold will take charge of first-team affairs at Leyton Orient after the departure of Kenny Jackett

Matt Harrold will take charge of first-team affairs at Leyton Orient after the departure of Kenny Jackett - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Leyton Orient have announced that Matt Harrold will take charge of first-team affairs following the departure of manager Kenny Jackett.

Jackett's exit was confirmed after Tuesday night's 2-0 home defeat against Bristol Rovers left O's with just two points from a possible 30 in League Two.

Harrold played 92 times for the club, helping them to the National League title under the late Justin Edinburgh, and joined the coaching set-up following his retirement from playing in 2020.

He previously took charge of a Crawley Town game as caretaker manager during the 2016-17 campaign and will be assisted at the Breyer Group Stadium by Academy manager Brian Saah.

A statement from club chairman Nigel Travis published on the Orient website said: "With a decision on a change of manager made, Matt and Brian will take temporary charge of first team affairs whilst the process begins for Kenny Jackett’s replacement.

“Both Matt and Brian have a close connection to the club, and I encourage you all to be loud and proud this Saturday at the Breyer Group Stadium, and really get behind the team.”

The O’s now face a massive game this Saturday, as next-to-bottom Carlisle United visit East London.

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It was announced that Keith Millen had left the Cumbrians by mutual consent early on Wednesday, with David Holdsworth stepping down from his position as director of football.

The 55-year-old Paul Simpson - a proud Cumbrian and Carlisle United fan - has been confirmed as Millen's replacement, having previously joined a struggling Conference club in 2003-4 and led them to back-to-back promotions into League One.

This weekend's meeting in E10 could be classed as a real relegation six-pointer, with Orient now just five points above the bottom two.

A win for Harrold's men would help put daylight between themselves and the Cumbrians, who have slipped into the relegation zone, ahead of another crucial contest at Colchester United on Tuesday (March 1).