On a different day the O’s may have found themselves in the lead after starting the opening five minutes the better team. Ouss Cissè was first to shoot but his strike was blocked by a blue shirt. Danny Johnson shot from a similar position, but this time Joel Dixon was forced to make a save and did well to tip the dipping ball wide of the goal.
Referee Andy Haines reduced Ross Embleton’s team to ten-men inside the opening ten minutes; giving Dan Happe his marching orders for bringing down Luke James, who was clear on goal. Joe Widdowson was introduced from the bench in place of James Dayton to bolster Orient’s defence.
Barrow quickly made their advantage apparent, taking the lead just seven minutes later. The home side passed the ball around with confidence and worked space for Josh Kay, who fired past Vigouroux from 18-yards.
Unsurprisingly, the Bluebirds dictated the play and limited Orient to very little possession of the ball in the first half. However, David Dunn’s team failed to make possession pay and double their lead, meaning the game was always insight of the O’s.
Set-pieces seemed to be difficult to defend for both teams with the wind playing havoc. Barrow may have doubled their lead from a corner but Vigouroux stood strong to deny Patrick Brough, keeping the score at just 1-0 at the break.
— Leyton Orient (@leytonorientfc) October 10, 2020
The O’s came out energised for the second half and instantly clawed themselves back into the game through the prolific Danny Johnson. Craig Clay pressed the opposition and won back possession before finding the forward, who slammed the ball into the bottom corner to level.
West Ham loanee Tunji Akinola was introduced from the bench in place of Sam Ling, to make his first appearance in an Orient shirt. Elsewhere, club Captain Jobi McAnuff replaced Louis Dennis to freshen legs in the closing quarter.
Barrow Captain Lewis Hardcastle appeared to push the O’s goal scorer over the advertisement board ten minutes later, but avoided a red card, with the ref choosing to book him, as well as Johnson and Cissè for their reaction to the incident.
Momentum swayed back and forth in the second half, with the ten-men of Leyton Orient fighting valiantly to leave the North with something to show. Play was constantly hindered by fouls from both teams, with multiple players picking up bookings.
Conor Wilkinson did look to have a golden opportunity to steal a winner moments from time, but Brough did very well to catch the number nine and slide in to nick the ball, before Wilkinson could take the shot on.
As soon as the fourth official signalled there would be five minutes of stoppage time, Barrow’s Luke James smashed the post from distance – the closest Barrow came to scoring a second goal, until Josh Kay headed over deep in stoppage time, with the goal beckoning. The O’s clung on in the closing stages to earn a deserved point.
ORIENT: Vigouroux, Ling (Akinola 67’), Coulson, Happe, Coulson, Clay, Wilkinson, Dayton (Widdowson 15’), Brophy, Dennis (McAnuff 67’), Johnson
SUBS: Sargeant, Maguire-Drew, Kyprianou, Wright
GOALS: Johnson 50’
BOOKED: Ling 7’ Johnson 61’ Cissè 61’ `Dennis 63′ McAnuff 76′ Wilkinson 87’
SENT-OFF: Happe 9’
BARROW: Dixon, Brough, Jones (Biggins 78’), Hardcastle, Kay, Beadling, Zouma, Angus, Barry, C. Taylor, James
SUBS: Lillis, Brown, J. Taylor, Hird, Hindle,
GOALS: Kay 16’
BOOKED: Hardcastle 61’ Kay 68’ Beadling 81’ Angus 82’
REF: ANDY HAINES