Glenn's Les Hope

Glenn Roeder is hoping he will get a positive response from Les Ferdinand about signing on at Upton Park for another year - and wishes he could have brought him in sooner in the last campaign.

"In the case of Les it was just a shame that the transfer window happened this year because if we had been allowed to bring in a Les Ferdinand at the end of September when Kanoute got injured we would have had a different result to what we had, I have no doubt about that," insists Glenn.

"In the short time he was here, from January until the end of the season, he built up an excellent partnership with Jermain Defoe and he helped him immensely both on and off the pitch."

Glenn feels Les, who Jermain calls a 'legend', leads by example and adds: "They worked well in training together and, as much as the importance of coaching and guiding young players in the right way is there, if you have the right senior players at the club, they are as good as coaches because the young players watch what they are doing and, if you have got anything about you as a player, you pick things up.

"When I was 20 and went to Queens Park Rangers they had an old team but it was full of ex-internationals, people like Johnny Hollins, Stan Bowles, Ian Gillard, Dave Clemence, to name a few.

"They were very talented footballers and I think I learnt more at QPR in the first six months, not by what the coach or manager told me, but by training every day with these players, than I probably did in the six years at Orient.

"That was because I had gone to work with a different class of player, and I think Les has had the same effect with Jermain, and that is why we so want Les to sign."

And it is Les' character as much as ability that impresses Glenn, who adds: "He has been terrific at the football club, apart from how he has helped us on the field.

"He is such a super human being with a positive attitude to life and that rubs off on people at Chadwell Heath in training during the week.

"It was very tough this year because we were fighting for our lives from the moment we lost to Newcastle, really.

"Overall, the players did very well to keep their spirits up but when Les came in he gave everyone a lift - as did Rufus Brevett - with that smiling face.

"He has a 'let's enjoy our training today' attitude and I think it rubbed off on a lot of people.

"And, as he says, he doesn't want to finish his career with a team that goes down. If he finishes next year he wants to finish with a team that has been promoted, and it just shows you what character he has and how he is as a person.

"I very much want Les Ferdinand on board next year and if we can secure his services for a year I think he will do very well for us.

"He will not only do well for himself and us - he will do well for Jermain Defoe."