The O’s fell to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of a clinical Crewe side in midweek. An unfortunate slip from Sam Sargeant gifted Charlie Kirk the opportunity to tap into an empty net to give his side the lead early on.
Ross Embleton’s side responded positively to that setback though and created several opportunities to equalise. Conor Wilkinson thought he’d found the leveller mid-way through the second half, only for the referee to rule out his header for an infringement.
As the O’s chased the game late on, they were hit with a sucker punch when Daniel Powell broke away on the counter and finished neatly to put the result beyond doubt.
Stevenage also tasted defeat in midweek, losing 3-1 to Ian Holloway’s Grimsby Town. That result condemned the Boro to their third consecutive loss in all competitions, which must come as a blow after it looked like they had possibly turned a corner following their 4-0 win at Cambridge a fortnight ago.
They currently sit bottom of the League Two table, four points adrift of 23rd place Morecambe and nine points below the O’s. Now with Graham Westley back in charge for his fourth spell in the dugout, they’ll be hoping he can replicate some of the form that saw them transform from non-league side to League One promotion hopefuls during his time in charge in the late 2000’s.
James Dayton serves the final match of his three game suspension.
Full back Sam Ling is expected to return to the squad in the next couple of weeks after returning to light training this week.
Jamie Turley is making progress of his own, though is unlikely to be available to Ross Embleton until March.
Jobi McAnuff remains unavailable for the foreseeable but has begun
The two sides last met back in August when they played out a 0-0 draw at the Breyer Group Stadium.
Orient largely dominated the affair with 66% possession, 24 shots and 9 corners. However, they were unable to find a way past Paul Farman in the Stevenage goal.
Referee: Graham Salisbury
Assistant Referees: Ryan Whitaker and Christopher Kidd
Fourth Official: Lisa Rashid
Salisbury has officiated 16 EFL fixtures so far this term, with nine coming in League Two. In those games he has handed out 49 yellow cards at an average of just over three per game. He is yet to show a single red card this season.
The last time he took charge of an O’s game was back in March 2017. Orient fell to 5-0 defeat away at Accrington Stanley in that one, with both Callum Kennedy and Michael Collins picking up bookings.
Can’t make the game? You can follow live updates through the Club’s Twitter feed. Post-match reaction will also appear on leytonorient.com shortly after the final whistle.
Overseas fans can watch the match via the Orient TV live stream, sponsored by The Lion and Key Hotel for just £5, while domestic fans can listen to the audio stream, with commentary from Dave Victor, for just £2.50.