Leyton Orient slip out of the play-off places with defeat to Forest Green Rovers

Lawrence Vigouroux of Leyton Orient makes a save during Leyton Orient vs Forest Green Rovers, Sky Be

Lawrence Vigouroux of Leyton Orient makes a save during Leyton Orient vs Forest Green Rovers, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at The Breyer Group Stadium on 23rd January 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Leyton Orient slipped out of the League Two play-off places as they suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat to Forest Green Rovers.

A 23rd minute strike from Nicky Cadden sealed the three points for Mark Cooper's men against 10-men O's to end their winning run at the Breyer Group Stadium.

Nicky Cadden of Forest Green Rovers and James Brophy of Leyton Orient during Leyton Orient vs Forest

Nicky Cadden of Forest Green Rovers and James Brophy of Leyton Orient during Leyton Orient vs Forest Green Rovers, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at The Breyer Group Stadium on 23rd January 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

O’s head coach Ross Embleton named an unchanged team from the 2-0 victory over Morecambe on the weekend although new signing Nick Freeman took James Dayton’s place on the bench after joining the club on loan from Wycombe Wanderers this week. 

An early free-kick for the hosts saw Conor Wilkinson strike straight into the hands of goalkeeper Lewis Thomas before shortly after former Orient loanee Scott Wagstaff got down the right flank and picked out striker Jamille Matt who nodded wide of the target. 

In the 15th minute of play captain Jobi McAnuff played a fantastic through ball to send Wilkinson in behind the defender from the right. 


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The former Dagenham & Redbridge attacker raced in and stabbed the ball past the onrushing goalkeeper Thomas but his effort was cleared off the line by Chris Stokes as Orient appealed for a penalty. 

Conor Wilkinson of Leyton Orient goes close during Leyton Orient vs Forest Green Rovers, Sky Bet EFL

Conor Wilkinson of Leyton Orient goes close during Leyton Orient vs Forest Green Rovers, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at The Breyer Group Stadium on 23rd January 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Eight minutes later the visitors opened the scoring as a long ball out from goalkeeper Thomas went over the head of Sam Ling and into the feet of Bailey Cargill who pushed forward and cut the ball back to Nicky Cadden who stabbed the ball home to make it 1-0. 

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O's goalkeeper was then almost caught off guard in the 37th minute when he was forced to race to his goal and tip a long-range free-kick over the cross bar from Cargill before the hosts captain McAnuff then had a corner shortly after. 

The 39-year-old found defender Dan Happe who nodded goalbound but young shot-stopper Thomas got his hand to the effort. 

Elliott Whitehouse of Forest Green Rovers and Jobi McAnuff of Leyton Orient during Leyton Orient vs

Elliott Whitehouse of Forest Green Rovers and Jobi McAnuff of Leyton Orient during Leyton Orient vs Forest Green Rovers, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at The Breyer Group Stadium on 23rd January 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

The hosts started the second-half more lively but failed to create too much until the 57th minute when left-back James Brophy weaved inside and threaded the ball out wide on the right for Wilkinson. 

The right forward skipped past two Forest Green defenders with some nifty footwork before the ball ran away from him as he looked to shoot. 

Boss Embleton introduced both of his new signings in Dan Kemp and Nick Freeman to change the game in the 63rd minute but his plans were ruined as defender Dan Happe picked up a second yellow card and was sent off just a minute later. 

In the 76th minute loanee Tunji Akinola done just enough to block Rovers substitute and former Barking loanee striker Josh Davison's strike and Vigouroux calmly caught the ball as the O’s switched to a 3-3-3 to try get themselves back into the contest. 

Leyton Orient: Vigouroux, Ling, Akinola, Happe, Brophy, Cisse (Freeman 63), Clay (Coulson 90+2), McAnuff, Wilkinson, Angol (Kemp 63), Sotiriou (Dennis 85). 

Unused subs: Sargeant, Widdowson, Kyprianou. 

Forest Green Rovers: Thomas, Godwin-Malife, Stokes, Cargill, Moore-Taylor, Wagstaff (Wilson 85), Adams, Cadden, Whitehouse (Sweeney 90+4), Matt, Collins (Davison 71). 

Unused subs: Wilson, Bernard, Hutchinson, Bailey, Young. 

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