Bury hit back after Spring strikes for Orient
O’s lose a lead for the second week running
Bury 1 Leyton Orient 1
Skipper Matt Spring fired his side into a first-half lead, but Orient’s hopes of winning their fifth away game in their last six disappeared when Bury substitute Lateef Elford-Alliyu marked his debut by prodding home a second-half leveller.
Orient had the better of the opening exchanges’ and deservedly took the lead when Spring curled a stunning effort into the top corner on 27 minutes.
But O’s paid the price for not making more of their first-half chances when Elford-Alliyu, on loan from West Brom, scored within three minutes of coming on as a second-half substitute.
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Orient boss Russell Slade threw Marek Stech, on loan from West Ham, straight into the side in place of the injured goalkeeper Lee Butcher, as he made three changes to the team that had been beaten 3-1 by Scunthorpe.
Central defender Ben Chorley was recalled, as was Terrell Forbes, while Leon McSweeney and Solomon Taiwo dropped to the bench.
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O’s started with Dean Leacock moving into the centre of midfield, alongside skipper Spring, with Jimmy Smith on the right and Cox on the left.
It was the visitors who carved out the first chance when Cox laid the ball into the path of Ryan Dickson, who drove an effort wide of the post from just outside the penalty area.
At the other end, Bury’s first real effort arrived on 20 minutes when Lenell John-Lewis found himself with space after Peter Sweeney threaded a ball through, but Chorley did well to block his effort.
But Orient started to take a vice-like grip and Spring seized upon Mark Carrington’s poor pass to send Cox away, but his shot from 25 yards was easily saved by Trevor Carson in the home goal.
With Orient enjoying their best spell of the game Jonathan Tehoue got the better of Bury’s veteran defender Efe Sodje, but his powerful effort flew inches wide.
It was the closest either side had come to making a breakthrough, but O’s had to wait just three minutes to grab the all-important first goal.
Dickson’s throw found skipper Spring in space on the edge of the box and he curled an excellent effort into the top right-hand corner of the net beyond Carson’s despairing dive.
It was only the midfielder’s second league goal of the season and he almost made in three nine minutes later with a speculative effort from distance, but this time it flew straight at keeper Carson.
With O’s looking the better side Tehoue almost added a second on 39 minutes, but his glancing header drifted just wide. Then the French striker wasted a glorious just before the break when he latched on to Sodje’s under-hit back-pass, but Carson stood firm and made a fine save.
The visitors kept their foot on the gas at the start of the second half and Kevin Lisbie had the ball in the back of the net after Smith headed the ball into his path following a cross from Cox, but the effort was ruled out for offside.
Bury made the first change of the game on 57 minutes when David Worrall replaced David Amoo and within two minutes the substitute fired in a shot from the edge of the box, that flew just wide of the target.
As the home side looked to get back into the game skipper Steven Schumacher fired a long-distance effort wide of the mark and the Shakers could have levelled just after the hour when Schumacher’s cross picked out Andy Bishop, but his header was saved by debutant Stech.
But the home side’s efforts were finally rewarded on 68 minutes when Elford-Alliyu made an indelible mark on his debut.
He took just three minutes to score when the home side broke following an Orient corner and the home side’s two substitutes combined - as Worrall crossed for Elford-Alliyu to prod home.
With both sides going for the win O’s missed a great chance to regain the lead seven minutes from time when skipper Spring delivered a cross to the far post, but Smith couldn’t keep his header down.
Then substitute George Porter, on for Tehoue, had a chance to win it two minutes from the end. The winger beat Sodje, but couldn’t find a finish, as his shot rolled agonisingly wide. Then the substitute volleyed over from the edge of the area after Cox’s header fell neatly into his path, so honours ended even and O’s were left to reflect on missed first-half chances.
Bury: Carson, Skarz, Sweeney, Schumacher, Bishop, John-Lewis (Elford-Alliyu 65 mins), Carrington, Sodje, Hughes, Eastham, Amoo (Worrall 57 mins). Subs: Picken, Branagan, Harrop.
Bury bookings: Sodje (63 mins foul)
Orient: Stech, Forbes, Cuthbert, Chorley, Dickson, Smith, Spring, Leacock, Cox, Lisbie, Tehoue (Porter 75 mins). Subs: McSweeney, Laird, Taiwo, Mooney.
Referee: Robert Madley
Attendance 2,807 (inc 270 Orient fans)