Andy Edwards beaten in crazy first match as Leyton Orient interim boss by Plymouth Argyle, but only after stunning effort from depleted O’s
- Credit: Archant
Sky Bet League Two: Leyton Orient 0 Plymouth Argyle 2
Andy Edwards first match in charge of Leyton Orient ended with a defeat to Plymouth Argyle, but he watched a fine display by his team.
Robbie Weir was sent off after 20 seconds and Jans Jense followed him down the tunnel in the 14th minute.
Argyle were already one up by this point and it took them until the 84th minute to double that advantage by which time the east Londoners supporters had already seen a performance of pure effort and determination from the nine players still on the pitch plus the substitutes - and one they won’t forget for a while.
Jense was handed his debut for Orient and started at right-back with Nicky Hunt alongside Tom Parkes in the centre of defence.
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Sandro Semedo was also brought into the starting XI in place of Harry Cornick, who dropped to the bench.
Yvan Erichot missed out with a groin problem and it was O’s who got the game underway through Weir.
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Unfortunately the home skipper didn’t last too long as he crunched into Ben Purrington by the touchline after just 20 seconds.
Referee Charles Breakspear sprinted over and although he struggled to get his card out at first, he did eventually pull out the red.
It was a crazy moment and Orient were down to 10 men with less than a minute played at Brisbane Road.
Now every decision the referee gave for the hosts was greeted with chants for another red card.
Liam Kelly, who had taken the armband from Weir, was then caught late and looked to be struggling.
To compound the bad start for Edwards, Plymouth took the lead in the 12th minute after some poor defending.
A simple pass forward by David Goodwille caught the O’s back four on their heels and Jimmy Spencer ran through.
Alex Cisak was slow to come off his line and Spencer was able to poke past him into the corner to give Argyle an early lead.
Kelly was replaced by Nigel Atangana shortly afterwards and then things got even worst for Orient.
Janse lunged at Jake Jervis and the Argyle man nipped the ball forward and was taken down cynically.
The Dutch defender was the last man and should have stayed on his feet, but referee Breakspear was left with no choice except to get out the red card again.
Another sending off could have occurred in the 21st minute when Goodwillie appeared to stamp on Hunt.
But just a talking to was the punishment from Breakspear who then had to have words with Edwards and Plymouth boss Derek Adams.
The pair had come to blows on the sidelines, although neither was sent to the stands and it was still only 1-0 on the pitch.
Cisak made a fine stop from Graham Carey’s curling effort in the 28th minute as the visitors pushed for a second.
Orient had a first shot on target 12 minutes before half time when Jay Simpson tried his luck from range.
Luke McCormick made a simple save but it boosted the hopes of the O’s supporters and they urged the team on.
Goodwillie should have made it 2-0 less than 60 seconds later when he headed well wide despite being unmarked.
Orient were keeping the league leaders at bay despite playing a 3-4-1 formation with Simpson in midfield.
And the fans were well behind them, singing at every opportunity and Plymouth’s players were visibly getting frustrated.
Fives minutes of stoppage time were added on at the end of the first half, but O’s survived until the break.
Edwards and Danny Webb, who had been urging their players on from the edge of the technical area throughout, were facing a big team talk during the interval.
Just when you thought it couldn’t be any worst, Atangana pulled up and couldn’t continue.
Harry Cornick took his place just three minutes into the second half and Edwards was having to field a winger and a forward in the centre of midfield.
Plymouth did have the ball in the back of the net in the 55th minute through Goodwillie, but the linesmen had already flagged for offside.
The O’s then created another half chance when Cornick and McCallum combined to set up Simpson in space.
Orient’s top goalscorer blazed the opportunity well wide from 30-yards and it was back to staying compact for the team.
Some of the east Londoners supporters were going to desperate measures to help their side with one getting involved in a heated exchange with Adams on the touchline.
Back on the pitch, Cornick nearly produced a sensational moment when he skipped past two opponents.
The AFC Bournemouth loanee passed into Gavin Massey, but he had strayed offside and the change was gone.
It showed what Cornick was capable of and gave O’s a glimmer of hope that they could get something from the game.
Orient’s supporters continued to urge the players on even though Cisak was forced to make a fine save from substitute David Fox.
Edwards’ men won a corner following a Plymouth mistake in the 68th minute, but unfortunately couldn’t make the most of it.
Another opportunity was mustered when Simpson was fouled 35-yards-out with 19 minutes left.
Callum Kennedy let fly and saw his effort deflect off the wall and behind for another corner kick.
Once again the set piece was unable to pick out an O’s player and it remained 1-0 to the leaders.
The pattern of play remained the same with Argyle pushing for a second and the hosts desperately trying to survive.
A final roll of the dice was made by Edwards when he introduced Jordan Bowery in the 82nd minute.
McCallum was the man to make way and went off to a standing ovation for his fine efforts.
Jimmy Spencer should have put the match to bed a minute later when he chipped wide after Cisak had parried Carey’s initial effort.
But in the 84th minute the result was finally confirmed when Plymouth made it 2-0 through Purrington.
Massey tried to let the ball go out of play and Purrington controlled it and found Ryan Donaldson, who tapped into the empty net.
All of the Orient fans applaud the team. They had just conceded a goal that everybody had expected far much earlier.
The O’s still carried on trying and Simpson glided past a couple of opponents before he was hauled down.
Kennedy got the free kick up and over the wall from 30-yards, but it sailed wide of McCormick’s goal.
Plymouth pressed for a third and the fourth official added on three minutes of stoppage time.
No more goals could be added at Brisbane Road and the O’s supporters clapped off their team at the full time whistle.
Referee Breakspear and the other officials were booed off, but Edwards got a round of applause as well alongside Webb.
Orient may have lost again at home but the performance of the nine men on the field and the substitutes went a long way to restoring a bond between the club and its fans.
Leyton Orient: Cisak; Janse, Hunt, Parkes, Kennedy; Massey, Weir, Kelly (Atangana 13, Cornick 48), Semedo; Simpson, McCallum (Bowery 82).
Unused substitutes: Sargeant, Palmer, Nnomo, Pollock.
Plymouth Argyle: McCormick; Miller, Bulvitis, Bradley, Purrington; Songo’o (Fox 57), Carey, Smith (Donaldson 76); Goodwillie, Spencer, Jervis (Tanner 73).
Unused substitutes: Dorel, Slew, Threlkeld, Ijaha.
Attendance: 4,366 (918 Plymouth Argyle supporters).