Leyton Orient pay penalty in Andy Edwards first official match in charge at Doncaster Rovers
- Credit: Archant
Sky Bet League Two: Doncaster Rovers 3 Leyton Orient 1
Andy Edwards first official match in charge of Leyton Orient ended in defeat after they conceded two second half penalties at Doncaster Rovers in League Two.
Callum Kennedy’s sensational free kick put the O’s ahead at Keepmoat Stadium, but the hosts levelled just before the break.
Two spot-kicks after half time proved the difference with Orient struggling to create enough throughout.
Edwards made three changes to the team picked by predecessor Alberto Cavasin on Tuesday night against Exeter City.
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Aron Pollock, Sandro Semedo and Ollie Palmer were brought into the side with O’s lining up in a 4-4-2 formation.
Nicky Hunt missed out with an ankle injury while Gavin Massey was suspended after picking up five bookings.
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Paul McCallum dropped to the bench and was joined by the returning Jordan Bowery and Jens Janse.
Myles Judd continued at right-back with Michael Collins in front of him and Semedo on the opposite flank.
Doncaster included ex-Orient captain Mathieu Baudry in their starting XI and former loanee John Marquis was up top.
The early exchanges were fairly even, though Judd showed his intent with two fine runs in the opening 10 minutes.
But the game came to life with quarter of an hour played when Marquis’ header forced Alex Cisak to brilliantly tip over the crossbar.
From the resulting corner, Tommy Rowe headed against the woodwork before Andy Butler had an effort cleared off the line by Tom Parkes.
It was a lucky escape for O’s in the 17th minute, yet they regrouped and Jay Simpson won a free kick around 35-yards-out.
Kennedy stepped up and produced a wonderful effort up and over the wall and into the top corner.
Orient’s left-back celebrated his first goal for the club and the first of Edwards reign with a little dance in the 19th minute.
Rovers almost replied instantly, however, through Jordan Houghton, though his effort was deflected wide.
A stoppage occurred minutes later when Semedo suffered a blow to his head, yet referee Rob Jones only halted play when the hosts attack had broken down.
The Portuguese winger was fine to resume and when he did the pressure from Doncaster grew.
With half an hour played, Rovers hit the crossbar again after Liam Mandeville played a one-two with Tommy Rowe before curling against the woodwork.
Two minutes later and Pollock headed away a dangerous cross before Parkes chucked himself in front of James Coppinger’s shot.
Darren Ferguson’s team were pushing for an equaliser and although Orient had rode their luck at times, they were defending resolutely.
But just as two minutes of stoppage time were added on, Doncaster finally got back on level terms.
Although O’s defended the initial corner well, Semedo failed to close down Houghton on the edge of the area and he drilled into the corner.
It was nothing less than the hosts deserved and despite some more pressure, it remained 1-1 at the break.
Rovers started the second half brightly and Mandeville had a shot deflected into the side netting before Coppinger fired wide.
Janse was getting prepared to come on afterwards, though Edwards changed his mind and Josh Koroma was introduced in the 57th minute.
Unfortunately his first real involvement was to bring down Matty Blair inside the area two minutes after entering the pitch.
Mandeville stepped up and sent Cisak the wrong way to give Doncaster a deserved lead at Keepmoat Stadium.
Edwards brought on McCallum with 20 minutes of the second half played with Palmer making way.
But Rovers made Orient’s task a whole lot harder seconds after the substitution when they won another penalty.
Rowe, who had been excellent all afternoon, glided past a couple of opponents before Parkes dived in and brought down the hosts number 10.
Mandeville again stepped up and found the net to put Doncaster in control and give O’s a huge uphill battle.
It nearly got worst when Nigel Atangana lose the ball and Marquis was played through, but Judd got back to make an outstanding covering tackle with quarter of an hour remaning.
Edwards saw his team go close on two occasions after with both chances involved substitute Koroma.
The 17-year-old linked up well with Kennedy first of all and the left-back picked out McCallum, though his header was tipped wide by Marko Marosi.
Simpson then produced a neat piece of skill out wide before his cross fell for Koroma, yet after bringing the ball down, he fired over the crossbar.
It was end-to-end now with Mandeville getting through on goal, but Pollock producing a wonderful tackle to halt the move.
Orient threatened again just before full time when Simpson played in Judd, but the right-back took a heavy touch and Marosi claimed.
Three minutes of stoppage time were added on and went by with little to note as O’s suffered their third consecutive defeat.
Edwards team defended well for long parts, but eventually Doncaster proved too strong for the visitors.
O’s remain 22nd just outside the bottom two on goal difference ahead of a two-week break from League Two action now.
Doncaster Rovers: Marosi; Alcock, Baudry, Butler, Mason; Blair, Houghton, Rowe; Coppinger (Beestin 90); Mandeville (Longbottom 90), Marquis.
Unused substitutes: Jones, Wright,Keegan, Evina, Calder.
Leyton Orient: Cisak; Judd, Pollock, Parkes, Kennedy; Collins, Weir, Atangana, Semedo (Koroma 57); Simpson, Palmer (McCallum 65).
Unused substitutes: Sargeant, Dunne, Bowery, Dalby, Janse.
Attendance: 5,135 (366 Leyton Orient supporters).