Writer: Jenny K
Date:Sunday April 3 2011
Sat 2nd April/15:00
Orient let a 1-0 half-time lead slip at Charlton, eventually losing 3-1 as our slump in form continues.
Scott McGleish put the O's ahead in the first-half but the Addicks fought back with goals from Paul Benson, Bradley Wright-Phillips and Jose Semedo.
The O's started well, controlling play with young Tommy Carroll in the centre of midfield bossing the show with sublime technique. His passes and quick turns on the ball often created space for Orient and set up attacks.
And in the 16th minute we got the reward for our good start. Alex Revell, playing on the right in the usual 4-5-1 away formation burst down the wing and crossed for Dean Cox in the box. The ball eventually ran for McGleish who had a simple finish for his 200th career league goal.
The veteran striker deserved his goal after leading the line on his own for the first-half. He never stopped running and caused Charlton's defence numerous problems before he understandably started to tire into the second-half.
Going into half-time Orient looked reasonably comfortable and good value for the 1-0 lead. But as is the case so often in the lower leagues, one goal is never enough.
And Charlton got back into the game only five minutes after the break, Benson tapping home after Jones' spilled Wright-Phillips' shot. From my view in the South Stand it looked like a mistake by Jones as he only managed to push the ball into Benson's path.
We then had to withstand heavy Charlton pressure as they dominated the game, forcing chances that Jones managed to deal with well.
We seemed to have got through a manic ten minutes intact and on 71 minutes we should have regained the lead. Jimmy Smith headed home Charlie Daniels' free-kick and celebrated in front of the away support before the referee pulled it back, claiming infringement on a Charlton defender.
It seemed an unfair decision at the time and we rightly felt very hard done by thanks to another bad decision.
But only minutes later Charlton were the ones to grab the lead in what turned out to be the main talking point of the game.
The title of this report probably should have read 'Jones throws away lead at Charlton' but I took pity on our usually reliable keeper.
Jones has kept us in many games this season with strings of fantastic saves (including two in quick succession yesterday) but in a moment of madness, when trying to play the ball out from the back, he threw it straight to Wright-Phillips. The striker seemed surprised as anyone in The Valley to collect the ball but he rolled it comfortably under Jones.
It was a horrendous mistake and whilst Charlton did go on to score another, it was the turning point in the game. Jones seemed so determined to play out from the back that he rushed the throw and his choice to play it short has once again been called into question.
Stunned by the goal, Orient struggled to create any clear-cut chances and the points was sealed late on for Charlton when Semedo headed home Michael Stewart's cross.
Despite hitting the woodwork twice in the final few minutes, Orient never really looked like getting back into the match after Jones' howler.
It was a frustrating result after being in control in the first-half. The team's performance dropped dramatically after the break, the main difference in my view being that Carroll couldn't get on the ball and dictate the game like he did in the first 45 minutes.
The momentum has been sucked out of the team with the last few results and all that is needed is a win to lift the spirits.
The play-offs seem a long way off at the moment but battling to stay in the race for the top six in April is a situation that seemed like a very distant dream at the start of the season, and something that every player in the team deserves a lot of credit for.
Charlton: Elliot; Solly, Dailly, Llera, Bessone; Wagstaff, Semedo, Parrett (Stewart 77), Racon; Benson (Nouble 90), Wright-Phillips (Eccleston 86)
Leyton Orient: Jones; Omozusi, Forbes, Barrett, Daniels; Carroll (Mpoku 85); Revell (Kane 77), Smith, Dawson, Cox; McGleish (Téhoué 66)
Date:Sunday April 3 2011
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|Leyton Orient||2||-||0||MK Dons|
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|7. Leyton Orient||46||21||8||17||7||71|
|8. MK Dons||46||19||13||14||17||70|
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