Leyton Orient U18s put in a valiant display but come out on the wrong end of a 1-0 scoreline against Luton Town to bring their FA Youth Cup run to an end.
The O’s had lost out twice to the Hatters this season, and couldn’t make it third time lucky as Freddie Hinds’ first half effort sealed the victory for the visitors.
During the first five minutes, both teams clustered the midfield, but it was Luton who pressed hardest and they nearly took advantage as Kavan Cotter was in acres of space, but Henry Ochieng closed him down well and cleared the danger,
The O’s first chance of the encounter fell to Christian Owusu, who saw his 25 yard effort slip wide of the target. Orient started to establish a more controlled attacking flow, with Myles Judd exposing some holes out wide, before Victor Adeboyejo was caught inches offside.
Adeboyejo was causing more problems as he won a corner, but it was cleared after Judd couldn’t get solid contact with the ball.
Heartbreak though would be lying right before the break, as Cotter found himself in acres of space on the Luton right and fizzed a low cross across the box, which missed everybody before finding the sliding boot of Freddie Hinds at the far post who slotted past Sam Sargeant in the O’s goal.
Orient’s response though was almost instantaneous as Adeboyejo cracked a thunderous shot just over, before Alzate weaved past a few defenders before seeing his shot blocked for a corner as O’s went into the break behind.
The opening to the second period was cagey, and the closest either side came was Hinds seeing an effort gathered by Sargeant.
Michael Clark replaced Sam Telling in the 65th minute at right back, but the Hatters had the wind in their sails as Hinds was once again causing trouble, charging in towards the right side of the box before unleashing one just past the far post.
Josh Koroma came on for Rian McLean and Orient nearly hit Luton on the break, but the final pass just didn’t have enough elevation to beat the last defender. A brace of corners followed as Pollock had the best chance from either, heading just over from close range.
Orient ramped up the pressure as time was ticking away, but were struggling to find the killer pass, Abrahams was brought on late for Owusu. Luton nearly grabbed a crafty late goal, as MJjannet blocked a clearance by Sargeant and the effort almost trickled in.
The O’s had one final chance to force extra time as the ball fell kindly to Abrahams inside the box, however, his effort was wide and Orient bowed out of the Cup.
ORIENT: Sargeant, Judd, Pollock, Happe, Telling (Clark 65), Ochieng, Alzate, Alderson (C), Mclean (Koroma 73), Owusu (Abrahams 83), Abeboyejo.
SUBS: Janata, Barker