Crawley Town U18 1-1 Leyton Orient U18
Leyton Orient returned to action after the recent weather conditions as they earned a 1-1 draw against Crawley Town.
Following a goalless opening half the O’s went ahead 11 minutes after the interval through Andys Nikolau, but Harry Anderson’s 84th strike for Crawley ensured honours were shared as both sides had to settle for a point.
It didn’t take long for Orient to create their first chance of the match, through Nikolau. The defender connected with Josh Uzun’s sixth-minute corner but was unable to direct his effort on target.
Moments later the O’s were again on the front foot as Sam Ling crossed for Uzun, but like Nikolau the midfielder failed to work Luke Colquorn with his header.
Crawley soon settled into the game as they fashioned their first opportunity in the 23rd minute following good work from Malachi Robinson, who did well to venture forward and pick out Brad Isaac, but the Crawley captain could only sidefoot his shot wide.
Orient came close once more to taking the lead on the half-hour mark when Uzun threaded a ball through to Sinclaire Sandy, whose low drive flashed agonisingly wide. But on the stroke of half time they were thankful to goalkeeper Ben Bridle-Card for keeping the score level, as he leapt off his line to confront Anderson as the Crawley player bore down on goal.
Both teams continued to battle for supremacy during the early moments of the second half, though it was Orient who would break the deadlock on 56 minutes. The Crawley defence failed to deal with the havoc caused by Uzun’s delivery from a corner, and Nikolau was on hand to stab the ball past Colquorn and give his side the lead.
The O’s now appeared to be settling into their groove following the goal, as Scott Kashkett forced Colquorn into a smart save minutes later.
However, with the game approaching the final 15 minutes the Reds pressed forward in search of an equaliser, as first Robinson’s attempted cross clipped the top of the Orient bar before Anderson’s fizzing shot flew just wide.
But with four minutes left on the clock came a sting in the tail for Orient, courtesy of Anderson. Emmanuel Rowe showed great energy to break down the left and send a low cross into the area that was swept home by the midfielder to draw Crawley level.
“I thought we played well in the first half, but maybe in the second we could have performed a bit better,” said Orient’s Freddy Moncur after the game.
“Of course its disappointing to have conceded a goal so late in the match, and maybe that comes down to a bit of game management and closing it out, but we will take that into account and move forward.”
Crawley Town: Luke Colquorn, Vince Smith, Malachi Robinson, Brad Isaac (C) (Daniel Hector, 65), Billy Woon, Thomas Adman, Harry Anderson, Ryan Richefond, Emmanuel Rowe, Ollie Gill (Tope Fowody, 65), Alex Laing (Cecil Jee-Thomas, 65).
Goal: Anderson (86)
Orient: Ben Bridle-Card, Sam Ling, Kane Adams, Lawson Okameji (Jerome Martelli, 46), Jack Humphrey, Andis Nikolau, Freddy Moncur, Montel Ageymang, Sinclaire Sandy, Scott Kashkett (Shola Oladipo, 68), Josh Uzun (C) (Nick Brown, 77). Sub not used: Christian Owusu
Goal: Nikolau (56)
Referee: Jamaal Horne