Orient pick up point at league leaders
- Credit: Archant
Sky Bet League Two: Plymouth Argyle 1 Leyton Orient 1
Leyton Orient picked up a point at League Two leaders Plymouth Argyle to move up to sixth in the table following an encouraging display.
Jay Simpson put Ian Hendon’s side ahead inside the opening four minutes at Home Park before he was forced off with what appeared an injury.
The O’s had chances to extend their lead in the second period, but conceded nine minutes from time to draw 1-1 with the division pace setters.
A point moves the east Londoners up one place and takes them onto 30 for the season with 19 matches played so far this campaign.
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Hendon was forced to make one change to the side that defeated York City on Saturday at Brisbane Road.
The O’s captain Mathieu Baudry missed out with a hip injury and was replaced by Cole Kpekawa.
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Kpekawa, after coming on in the 25th minute at the weekend, made his full debut and Freddy Moncur came onto the bench at Home Park.
Plymouth got the match underway, but after just 30 seconds home goalkeeper Christian Walton suffered an injury.
He jumped to claim a header by Luke Croll and landed awkwardly – hurting his neck and shoulder in the process.
Fortunately for Argyle he was able to continue, but after just four minutes he had another problem.
Ollie Palmer won the ball in the air and Simpson was given time to control the ball and let fly from outside the area.
His effort flew past Walton in the home goal and gave Hendon’s men the lead with his 14th strike of the campaign.
Argyle tried to respond and Alex Cisak easily saved from Jake Jervis before Jean-Yves M’voto went close down the other end, but had a header from a corner saved.
It had been a frantic opening quarter of an hour and the home side were now getting more of a foothold in the match.
Carl McHugh had a shot from outside the area deflected behind for a corner, but Orient defended well.
But in the 21st minute Plymouth should have got back on level terms when Jervis had another chance.
Kevin Mellor and Graham Carey linked up well and played the ball into Craig Tanner. He crossed in for Jervis, but the Argyle man failed to hit the target.
Orient’s Simpson went into the book after that for a foul on Oscar Threlkeld and the Bolton man was forced off and replaced by Josh Simpson.
Carey had a free kick deflected over the crossbar towards the end of the half and from the resulting corner McHugh had a header cleared away from the O’s goal.
Plymouth’s Simpson went close eight minutes before the break after Jarvis played the ball into the midfielder, but he fired over the crossbar.
Hendon then brought Lloyd James on with Simpson appearing to hobble off at Home Park just before half time.
Four minutes of stoppage time were added on at the end of the 45, but the east Londoners defended well and came in 1-0 up at the interval.
Orient began the second period brightly as John Marquis tested Walton before setting up Sammy Moore, but he fired over.
Marquis forced Walton into a fantastic stop a minute before the hour mark after creating a yard of space.
The Millwall loanee then played the ball back to Bradley Pritchard, but again Walton was able to save.
M’voto headed over from a corner shortly afterwards as Hendon’s side pushed to get a second against the league leaders.
Orient were growing in confidence McHugh picked up a booking from bringing down Marquis as Plymouth’s frustration began to grow.
From the resulting set piece, the ball dropped nicely for the Millwall loanee on the edge of the box, but his volley went just wide.
Moore went close 13 minutes from time with a free kick from range as the O’s finished strongly – targeting consecutive wins for the first time in the division since August.
Unfortunately Argyle had other ideas and grabbed an equaliser in the 81st minute through captain Curtis Nelson.
Croll had a close range shot saved by Cisak, but Plymouth’s skipper was on hand to fire in the rebound and set up a tense finish.
The momentum was with the home side now and Tanner had a shot that hit his team mate Ryan Brunt before the O’s cleared.
Orient responded, though, with Marquis again causing problems and having an effort saved by Walton before Gary Sawyer cleared against his old club.
Four minutes of stoppage time were added on and Scott Kashket was introduced, replacing first half substitute James.
The full time whistle followed shortly afterwards as Hendon’s men had to settle for a point against the League Two leaders.
Orient move up to sixth in the table and next up for them is a clash with AFC Wimbledon at Brisbane Road on Saturday.
Plymouth Argyle: Walton, Mellor, Sawyer, McHugh, Nelson, Carey, Wylde (Brunt 65), Jervis, Threlkeld (Simpson 31), Tanner, Croll.
Unused substitutes: Bittner, Cox, Harvey, Smalley, Bentley.
Leyton Orient: Cisak, Clohessy, M’voto, Kpekawa, Shaw, Payne, Pritchard, Moore, Marquis, Simpson (James 38, Kashket 90), Palmer.
Unused substitutes: Sargeant, Dunne, McAnuff, Turgott, Moncur.
Attendance: 6,469 (198 Leyton Orient supporters).