Revell double ends Orient’s long wait
Slade’s boys record elusive away win
Bristol Rovers 0 Leyton Orient 3
ORIENT smashed their away-day jinx in sensational style, as they blasted Bristol Rovers with a magnificent three-goal burst at the Memorial Stadium.
Dean Cox put O’s on their way to success with the opener after 20 minutes and then top scorer Alex Revell netted two more.
It signalled Orient’s first away win in the league since last January – a run of 18 games in total and the victory could not have come in a more dramatic fashion.
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Rovers did not help their cause as they had Carl Regan sent off on 34 minutes for an awful tackle on O’s skipper Stephen Dawson but, by then, Russell Slade’s side were 2-0 up and roaring to victory.
Orient took the lead on 20 minutes with an excellent move as defender Charlie Daniels found skipper Dawson, who played a neat one-two with Jimmy Smith and delivered the perfect cross for Dean Cox to score his fifth goal of the season at the far post.
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Seven minutes later it was like a re-run of the recent trip to Colchester, where O’s had taken a two-goal lead during the early stages of the game.
This time it was in-form striker Alex Revell who was the marksman as Cox turned from scorer to provider.
The diminutive winger, playing in a five-man midfield, was picked out by Matthew Spring’s precision pass and he scampered down the right and provided an excellent cross for Revell to head powerfully home.
This time, with a two-goal cushion, Orient refused to buckle and they could have had added a third when fit-again Paul-Jose Mpoku, who had shaken off a hamstring injury and was restored to the side, went agonisingly close.
The youngster, on loan from Tottenham, was a constant thorn in the Rovers side and looked to have scored when he beat a defender and Rovers keeper Mikkel Anderson, but Byron Anthony blocked his goal bound effort.
Any hopes Bristol Rovers had of getting back into the game were blown away 11 minutes before the break when Regan caught Dawson with an x-certificate challenge and referee Andy Woolmer had no hesitation in brandishing a red card.
But, although Rovers were down to 10 men, the tackle took its toll on the O’s skipper, who was forced out of the action five minutes before the break and he was replaced by Andy Whing, who moved into midfield.
It was an excellent first-half performance from the O’s and they well and truly buried their away-day jinx six minutes after the break.
The impressive Daniels was involved again, as he powered between two defenders and fired in the perfect cross for Revell to rifle home his ninth goal of the season and his sixth in the last five games.
Whing went close to adding Orient’s fourth on the hour, but saw his close-range header saved by Andersen after Mpoku provided the cross.
Little was seen of the home side as an attacking force and their first genuine attempt on target came on 62 minutes when Lee Butcher made a regulation save from a Chris Lines’ free-kick.
At the other end Revell had a chance to complete his hat-trick when substitute James Walker, on for Mpoku, provided the cross, but the O’s striker hooked a volley wide from close range.
That was his last chance, as the hit man was replaced eight minutes from time by Scott McGleish.
O’s remained in control and Cox almost fired his second goal of the game five minutes from time when he sent in an angled effort that flew just wide.
Orient: Butcher, Omozusi, Forbes, Chorley, Daniels, Spring, Cox, Dawson (Whing 40 mins), Smith, Mpoku (Walker 67 mins), Revell (McGleish 82 mins). Subs: Lovelock, Brown, Jarvis, Tehoue.
Attendance: 5,541 (including 282 Orient fans)