The young O’s suffered their first defeat of their Youth Alliance League campaign with a 3-0 loss at home to AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.
Having already wrapped up the league before the Christmas break, Richard Thomas fielded a rather young side with four under-16s and three first-year scholars in the starting XI, with the majority of second-years out on loan or injured.
The opening five minutes presented chances for both sides and it was Orient went close first after a great cross into the box from Henry Ochieng found Ruel Sotiriou but his header was off target.
AFC Wimbledon then went even closer as they played out from the back and managed to work the ball into the box and hit the crossbar.
The O’s then saw a penalty claim turned down when Sotiriou appeared to be bundled over by two defenders but the referee waved away the appeals.
Soon after first-year scholar Teddy Perkins had a good opportunity to put the O’s in front when a ball in from a corner found the defender in space but his header was soft and straight at the keeper who collected comfortably.
Just after the half hour mark the O’s went 1-0 down. Wimbledon were getting possession in and around the box and Osaze Urhoghide managed to get a shot away which Arthur Janata couldn’t get down quick enough to save and it rolled into the bottom corner.
Having gone into the break a goal to the good then Dons then doubled their lead after the restart. Antonio Walker was set free down the left side as he used his pace and slotted the ball past Janata.
With 25 minutes remaining the visitors added a third when Nicholas Akoto scored from close range, after holding off defenders in the box using his height and strength before lashing the ball into the net to condemn the O’s to a first league defeat of the season.
ORIENT: Arthur Janata, Ben Thompson, Toby Stevenson, Henry Ochieng, Teddy Perkins, Luca Carter (Ernold Haxhiu 67) , Andrew Camilo-Tayaca (Jaedon Philips 58), Charley Barker, Ruel Sotiriou, Amin Benyoucef, Charles Clayden
SUBS: Alfie Fleming, Kleon James, Bradley McClenaghan