O’s play-off hopes hit by Cheltenham

Cheltenham Town 1-0 Leyton Orient

Leyton Orient’s outside play-off hopes suffered a blow as the Robins returned today to the top of the tree, on Saturday.

Conor Thomas’s first-half penalty was sufficient to condemn Jobi McAnuff to only their second reverse in ten games of his interim stewardship.

Having survived several scares – with Andy Williams unable to profit from poor Orient defending – Lawrence Vigouroux’s reckless challenge on the hitman proved costly on 30-minutes.

Referee, Mr Bramall pointed straight to the spot and Thomas sent Vigouroux the wrong way, with a cool finish.

Jamie Turley – guilty of a couple of poor first-half clearances – redeemed himself straight after the turnaround, with a goal-saving block on Alfie May.

Then, on 55-minutes, having won a rare free-kick, Conor Wilkinson was unlucky to see his flicked header acrobatically turned over by West Brom loanee, Josh Griffiths.

Neither side managed to create any further clear-cut chances and having now ended a seven-game unbeaten run, McAnuff admitted: “It was a tough afternoon. Cheltenham are a difficult team to break down.

“Conceding a goal like we did was difficult to take.”

“Even though we were better, in the second half, we didn’t create enough in terms of good opportunities.”

With a midweek trip to Harrogate and a home game, this Saturday against struggling Barrow, McAnuff added: “We move on. It’s a quick turnaround in fixtures and we know what we have to do in terms of points – we can’t dwell on this result.”

McAnuff concluded: “Today, was about those half-chances making the difference – like Conor Wilkinson’s header, after the break. But, we’ve been on a good run. It’s now time to put another one together.”

Opposing boss, Michael Duff said: “We had enough chances to win even a couple of games today. We need to be more clinical – but they are a good team – Leyton Orient. They had been on a good run and we limited them to one shot over the ninety minutes.”

Duff paid tribute to McAnuff’s efforts: “They’re a good side. They’ve got good players. Jobi has changed the shape of the team and has put more structure into the team – of course, that isn’t being disrespectful. We had to be at our best today. I hope Jobi gets the job full-time.”

Cheltenham Town: Josh Griffiths, Seán Long, Charlie Raglan, Ben Tozer (Capt), Chris Hussey, Conor Thomas (Finn Azaz 80′), Liam Sercombe, Matty Blair, Andy Williams (Sam Smith 66′), Alfie May (George Lloyd 89′), Callum Wright Subs not used: Scott Flinders (GK), Lewis Freestone, Ellis Chapman, Indiana Vassilev

Leyton Orient: Lawrence Vigouroux, Sam Ling, Jamie Turley, Dan Happe, Joe Widdowson (Tristan Abrahams 56′), Hector Kyprianou, Daniel Kemp, Craig Clay (Capt)(Nick Freeman 80′), James Brophy, Conor Wilkinson, Danny Johnson Subs not used: Sam Sargeant (GK), Josh Coulson, James Dayton, Jobi McAnuff, Tunji Akinola, Louis Dennis

Referee: Thomas Bramall
Assistants: Daniel Flynn and& Thomas Harty
Fourth Official: Alastair Nelson.


Brian Jeeves

Email: [email protected]