Josh Koroma’s hat-trick earns Leyton Orient and boss Danny Webb fine away win at Newport County
- Credit: Archant
Sky Bet League Two: Newport County 0 Leyton Orient 4
Leyton Orient put a terrible week behind them to win 4-0 at fellow League Two relegation rivals Newport County with Josh Koroma netting a hat-trick.
The 18-year-old was sensational, as were all of his team-mates, as O’s produced a battling display in Wales.
Danny Webb’s team showed their class in front of goal and scored three times in the first half to take control.
After being presented with a petition to wind the club up on Wednesday by HM Revenue and Customs, Orient finished the week off on a positive note.
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Webb was forced to make five changes to the O’s team which started the 4-1 defeat at Stevenage on Tuesday night.
Michael Clark (ankle) and Paul McCallum (knee) missed out due to injury while Gavin Massey was suspended.
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Tom Parkes returned following bad bruising to his hip while talented teenager Sam Dalby was up front.
Freddy Moncur and Steven Alzate were handed full debuts after impressing off the bench on Tuesday.
Sammy Moore dropped to the bench while Charlie Grainger replaced Sam Sargeant in goal and made his first competitive appearance for O’s since December 5 2015.
The Rodney Parade pitch wasn’t in the greatest of shape and only looked worse after the warm-up.
Newport got the contest underway and put Orient on the back foot immediately with Grainger’s miskick gifted them a third-minute corner.
Alex Samuel fired the short corner wide before O’s 20-year-old goalkeeper was forced into action.
Grainger punched Scot Bennett’s free kick clear before parrying another delivery away from goal.
And then in the eighth minute, after the hosts had dominated the opening exchanges, Orient took the lead.
Sandro Semedo won the ball well and Moncur played in Koroma, who sprinted down the left touchline.
The teenager couldn’t pick out Sam Dalby, but Alzate, on his full debut, ran in at the back post and slotted the opener.
It was a brilliant moment for the youngster and the O’s after an extremely difficult week for the club.
Five minutes later things got even better for Webb and the east Londoners as they doubled their advantage.
Alzate did well in midfield and passed to Dalby, who quickly threaded a fine through ball to Koroma.
Koroma, who had gone close several times in recent games, kept his cool and fired past Joe Day to make it 2-0.
It was a wonderful start for Orient and despite the terrible conditions, they looked so composed against the Exiles.
Newport’s frustration was growing and Semedo felt the force of it in the 21st minute when Sid Nelson shoved him into the advertising hoardings.
Fortunately the winger was able to carry on and the hosts created the next chance, but Dan Butler blazed over from range.
The home supporters were growing increasingly irate with every passing second, yet Orient remained focused.
With Michael Collins dominating in midfield, O’s continued to move the ball around well and with composure.
Graham Westley’s side showed their threat nine minutes before half time when Marlon Jackson forced Grainger to tip over his curling effort.
Orient’s goalkeeper punched away Butler’s resulting set-piece, but Samuel did well and beat two players before Callum Kennedy deflected his shot wide.
Newport pressed again, though Parkes cleared and it remained 2-0 with the first half drawing to a close.
The Exiles were handed another good chance in the 43rd minute when referee Gavin Ward gave them a free kick.
Butler eyed it up, 25-yards-out, but curled his effort wide and the latest spell of home pressure was over.
Two minutes of additional time were added on at the end of the first half and Orient weren’t done there.
Semedo did well on the left and passed into Dalby, who showed brilliant quick feet to skip past his opponent.
Dalby raced through on goal and then unselfishly rolled the ball to Koroma, who tapped home to make it 3-0.
It was another fine move by Orient and resulted in them coming in at half time three goals to the good.
Nicky Hunt made a point of going around to the youngsters to let them know it was far from over, but it had been a superb first 45 for Webb and his team.
Westley made a double change at the break with Sean Rigg and Joss Labadie being introduced for Nelson and Darren Jones.
Just four minutes after the restart and Orient should have been presented with a great chance to extend their lead.
Koroma latched onto a long clearance and flicked the ball over Bennett’s head before running through on goal.
The youngster, who was on a hat-trick, tried to round home custodian Day, but was brought down just outside the area.
Referee Ward, bizarrely, ruled Koroma had dived and handed the teenager a yellow card for simulation.
Newport nearly pulled one back in the 51st minute when Rigg had a shot deflected behind for a corner.
Westley’s team pushed to find a way back into the contest and won a succession of corners, but O’s defended strongly.
The home players then began to lose their heads as they started flying into tackles at Rodney Parade.
But Orient remain composed and Alzate showed fine footwork to demonstrate they were not going to lose focus.
And then in the 63rd minute, O’s were awarded a penalty and a great chance to well and truly kill the game off.
Yet again it occurred after lovely skill by Alzate and Mitchell Rose pulled the teen to the ground and left Ward with no choice.
Kennedy had the ball initially, but gave it to Koroma and it was a chance for the 18-year-old to net a hat-trick.
The academy graduate stepped up and although Day got a hand on his effort, it found the roof of the net.
Koroma had the match ball and Orient were 4-0 up and finishing a terrible week on a brilliant note.
Webb brought off O’s hat-trick hero in the 68th minute and he left to warm applause from the home supporters.
Tristan Abrahams was introduced in place of Koroma and made his debut for Orient in South Wales.
Newport threatened again with 17 minutes remaining when Samuel did well on the right and forced Grainger into a low save.
The O’s goalkeeper grabbed home of the rebound and the visitors continued to fight for every inch afterwards.
Webb brought off the excellent Dalby in the 84th minute with Victor Adeboyejo replacing him.
Teddy Mezague was introduced three minutes later with the impressive Moncur making way.
Four minutes of additional time were signalled at the end of the 90 and O’s were on the verge of their first clean sheet since December 10.
Alzate went down with cramp deep into time added on and sportingly received help by opponent Labadie.
Shortly afterwards the full time whistle occurred to hand Orient just their second win of 2017.
It was one to savour for their supporters after a tough week and once again showed the talent coming through at Brisbane Road.
The O’s remain 23rd in the table, although are only five points from safety with Notts County in 22nd position.
Orient’s players showed at Rodney Parade despite everything else occurring behind the scenes, they are not giving up yet.
Newport County: Day; Nelson (Rigg 46), Jones (Labadie 46), O’Brien, Demetriou, Butler; Samuel, Bennett, Rose; Jackson (Williams 64), Bird.
Unused substitutes: Bittner, Reid, Bignot, Owen-Evans.
Leyton Orient: Grainger; Judd, Hunt, Parkes, Kennedy; Alzate, Moncur (Mezague 87), Collins, Semedo; Koroma (Abrahams 68), Dalby (Adeboyejo 84).
Unused substitutes: Sargeant, Moore, Ochieng, Happe.
Attendance: 3,378 (395 Leyton Orient supporters).