Leyton Orient head coach Richie Wellens believes his side are much better than when they last played Portsmouth in League One.

O's head to Fratton Park this weekend, having not played last weekend due to scheduled opponents Blackpool being in FA Cup action against Nottingham Forest.

And Wellens is hoping his men can make more of an impact after suffering a 4-0 loss to Pompey at Brisbane Road earlier in the season.

"It's a 100-yard pitch by about 60, there's white lines on it, it's 11 v 11. It don't matter," he told the club website.

"Portsmouth have been in the Premier League but the reason they're in League One is because something has gone wrong at their club.

"I think we're a better team, more savvy now than when we played them.

"I got a bit of stick off Portsmouth fans when I said they didn't really do much to beat us and it was actually a compliment to them, the fact they are well-rounded, experienced, strong. They came to our place and was just ok and won 4-0.

"That's a real big compliment I gave them, but some of their supporters gave me stick thinking I was saying they're not good.

"It was a real efficient performance by them and a compliment."

O's started 2024 in fine form, claiming a 2-0 win at Cambridge United on New Year's Day thanks to second-half goals from Jordan Brown and Dan Agyei - his first for the east London club.

And Wellens was pleased to keep a third successive clean sheet, but also concerned about picking up five bookings at the Abbey Stadium.

"It's because my back four are not being overworked all the time," he added of the clean sheet. 

"That was a massive benchmark last year and it's non-negotiable."

Ethan Galbraith, Omar Beckles, Tom James, Shaq Forde and Theo Archibald were all shown yellow cards at Cambridge, with Wellens adding: "It's really difficult to control your emotions.

"This is the first year them rules have been really strict. If you touch it five yards it's an automatic booking.

"These lads have had five, 10, 15 years of football where you're allowed to just kick it - and you're not allowed.

"It's something we're aware of, something the chairman spoke to me about probably two or three months ago and we have got better.

"We'll keep learning and keep getting better."

As for any possible movement during the January transfer window, Wellens does not expect to be too active.

"We would like a couple more," he said.

"Theo has got a problem but he's getting through it. Ruel [Sotiriou] is ruled out for two to three weeks.

"What I want to do is start us up for 67 minutes and if we do tire, we can bring fresh legs on to continue what we do without changing that much.

"I think we need an extra forward. There won't be too much movement but we'll wait and see."