Orient squander three-goal lead away to Blues
PUBLISHED: 09:30 24 July 2019
Pre-season friendly: Bishop's Stortford 3 Leyton Orient 3
After going just over five hours without conceding, Leyton Orient shipped three in one half to lose a three-goal lead and draw 3-3 at Bishop's Stortford on Tuesday night.
The O's selected a young and relatively inexperienced back four with Arthur Janata in goal, but the majority of the action took place down the other end during the opening 45 in Hertfordshire.
Lee Angol struck a brace - sandwiched by Jordan Maguire-Drew's penalty - but Jamie Cureton's hosts fought back from three down at the interval to earn a draw in front of 816 spectators.
Ross Embleton included two trialists in his starting XI, one being Michael Chambers, of Dulwich Hamlet, at centre back.
He was initially under pressure with Stortford starting well, but with one of Orient's first real moves of the friendly they took the lead.
Maguire-Drew took a short corner and found Angol, who rifled into the top corner with 17 on the clock.
Seven minutes later and the pair were involved again and eventually they doubled O's advantage on a scorching hot evening.
Angol was played through on goal and although Fred Burbridge denied him, Stortford centre back Ryan Hensaw caught him with his follow through and a penalty was given to the League Two side.
The responsibility went to Maguire-Drew and he coolly side-footed home to make it 2-0 in the 25th minute and Orient added another not long after.
Just before the half an hour mark, the visitors grabbed a third as Angol, Conor Wilkinson and Dale Gorman combined neatly in and around the Stortford area before a slide through pass found Angol, who cut inside twice before drilling beyond Burbridge.
With 30 minutes on the clock, it was so far so good for Embleton, who had watched the first period in the stands, but he returned to the dugout at this point before a water break occurred at ProKit UK Stadium.
No more goals were produced before the break and Orient replaced captain for the night Josh Wright and Trialist B with Brendon Shabani and James Alabi, moving from a 4-4-2 to three in the middle.
Immediately they were on the back foot and Stortford reduced the deficit 50 seconds into the second half when a ball over the top caught out O's defence and Luke Callander fired home with Janata unable to get his body in front of the shot.
Cureton's Blues had momentum now and with a large crowd - containing lots of juniors - making plenty of noise, they pulled another one back just past the hour mark.
A corner into the area from Aaron Green found Mark Haines and he knocked on towards Orient's goal where 43-year-old Cureton flicked in from close range.
It earnt one of the biggest cheers of the night before he was replaced with 69 played after again showing age is merely a number.
Three minutes after his substitution and Stortford were suddenly level having scored three times in the space of 27 minutes.
Greene swung a set-piece into the area and it took a slight touch which was enough to see talented teenager Janata beaten.
Maguire-Drew, now wearing the armband, attempted to get Orient back ahead with a shot saved before another one was blocked, while he also teed up midfielder Gorman for an opening, but it ended 3-3 at Stortford.
Despite throwing away a three-goal lead, there were positives for O's and Chambers looks a decent option were the Brisbane Road outfit to lose any of their current defenders.
Next up for Embleton's men is a return to E10 on Saturday to face a Norwich City XI on what will be an emotional occasion for everyone associated to the club.
Leyton Orient; Janata; Judd, Trialist A, Ogie, Sweeney; Wright (C) (Alabi 46); Trialist B (Shabani 46), Gorman; Maguire-Drew; Wilkinson, Angol.
Unused substitutes: Sargeant, Ekpiteta, Happe, Ling, Brophy, Sotiriou.