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Robin Cottle at Brisbane Road
Saturday, March 1, 2014
League One: Leyton Orient 2 Colchester United 1
Moses Odubajo’s late winner secured Orient three vital points against Colchester.
Marcus Bean’s late header looked like it would deny the hosts the win at Brisbane Road as the ex-Brentford man beat Eldin Jakupovic from former O’s loanee Ryan Dickson’s left wing cross with 10 minutes remaining.
David Mooney had given Orient the lead against his former club with a superb volley but Odubajo was the hero as he raced onto substitute Shaun Batt’s clever pass and slotted past goalkeeper Sam Walker.
It was a disjointed performance from the O’s but manager Russell Slade won’t care, although Wolves went top of the table on goal difference thanks to their 3-0 win over Port Vale.
Mooney was one of four former Colchester players in the home side’s starting line-up along with James, captain Nathan Clarke and Kevin Lisbie, who was recalled to the team in place of Chris Dagnall.
His was one of two changes from the 2-0 win over Swindon last weekend.
Mathieu Baudry missed the game with a hamstring strain which triggered a defensive reshuffle. Scott Cuthbert shifted into the middle, Elliot Omozusi moved to right back and Gary Sawyer came in on the left.
Orient struggled to create chances early on with Lisbie, who scored 17 goals in 43 games for Colchester, brought the best out of visiting goalkeeper Sam Walker at his near post.
Despite some neat interplay, United lacked a cutting edge in front of goal.
Former West Ham youngster was a constant presence but twice fired straight at Jakupovic, who has only conceded three goals in eight games since arriving at Brisbane Road.
Mooney volleyed Orient ahead somewhat against the run of play but the home side struggled to shake off Colchester.
Gavin Massey flashed a shot wide for the visitors while at the other end Magnus Okuonghae nicked the ball of Moses Odubajo’s toes as the winger set himself to shoot.
And Jakupovic made a superb triple save in the first minute of the second half, denying Massey on three occasions.
Orient had to soak up serious pressure after the break but Dean Cox did test Walker from the edge of the area.
Bean looked like he had secured a well-deserved point for Colchester with two minutes remaining.
But Odubajo had other ideas just three minutes later with his 10th goal of the season with a dramatic winner.
The difficult start to February seems a long time ago now as the O’s made it 10 points from the last four games ahead of trips to Notts County and Port Vale.
Leyton Orient: Jakupovic; Omozusi, Clarke, Cuthbert, Sawyer; Odubajo, Vincelot, James (Bartley 74), Cox; Mooney (Batt 69), Lisbie (Dagnall 88). Substitutes not used: Larkins, Lasimant, Ness, Simpson.