Orient strikers Aaron Drinan and Harry Smith put on a clinical display as as both players scored two goals each in a 4-1 home victory.
Drinan put Orient ahead after twenty minutes before Harry McKirdy levelled for the visitors. The O’s took control of the game in the second half as two quick fire goals put the match firmly in Orient’s control before Smith’s second goal put the match beyond doubt.
Orient initially made one change to the side that beat Tranmere Rovers in the FA Cup on Saturday, as Alex Mitchell came into the side in place of Adam Thompson. Manager Kenny Jackett was forced into a late change when Hector Kyprianou picked up an injury in the warm-up. Darren Pratley came into the side in his place.
Swindon Town made two changes as Romony Chrichlow and Ben Gladwin replaced Jonathan Williams and Rob Hunt in the starting eleven.
Orient saw a lot of the ball early on and were nearly rewarded for their fast start when Craig Clay’s strike from the edge of the area almost fell kindly for Harry Smith. Swindon goalkeeper, Joseph Wollacott, reacted quickly to pounce on the ball before the O’s forward could prod home.
Swindon grew into the match as the first half wore on and almost opened the scoring when Ellis Iandolo mis-timed his header at the back post. The Robins full-back glanced his effort wide after he met Lewis Reed’s free-kick.
Aaron Drinan continued his fine run of form in front of goal when he opened the scoring for the O’s, mid-way through the first half. Shadrach Ogie played a perfectly weighted cross-field pass from the left wing to full-back ,Tom James. James delivered a low cross for the Orient striker to finish, first-time, into the roof of the net from the edge of the six yard box.
It took until the half hour mark for the visitors to first test Lawrence Vigouroux. Payne worked space for a shot on the edge of the Orient penalty area, but his left footed effort was straight at the Orient goalkeeper.
Harry McKirdy, who had made several threatening runs during the first half, produced some nimble footwork in the Orient penalty area before flashing a ball across goal. His cross was too high for Tyreece Simpson who was waiting in the six-yard box to head home.
As half time approached, Swindon missed a golden chance to equalise. Orient attempted to clear an inswinging corner, but the ball fell kindly for Ben Gladwin who spun and miscued an effort with his left foot, high over the bar.
The Robins did eventually find an equaliser in the 41st minute through McKirdy’s near-post header. Swindon forward Tyreece Simpson received the ball inside his own half before driving towards the O’s goal. As he reached the final third, he worked the ball wide for Iandolo. The Swindon man looked to have under hit his cross but Mckirdy stooped low to send his header past Vigouroux, in goal.
The visitors almost completed the turnaround early in the second half. Vigouroux first saving down to his right from Kesler-Hayden’s shot from the edge of the box. In the next phase of play, Iandolo drove into the Orient box before rolling his shot past the far post.
Aaron Drinan put Orient ahead for the second time in the match on 60 minutes with another first-time finish. Theo Archibald’s dangerous cross from the left touch-line travelled through a number of bodies before Drinan expertly placed the ball into the bottom right corner.
Two became three a matter of minutes later when Drinan’s strike partner, Harry Smith, fired past Wollacott, in goal. Archibald was the provider again as his through ball left Orient’s number nine with just the keeper to beat. He made no mistake as he struck low into the bottom corner of the goal.
Orient put the result beyond doubt with ten minutes remaining. Aaron Drinan shot low across goal after finding himself in space on the right of the Swindon penalty area. The Robins’ goalkeeper could only parry Drinan’s effort straight into the path of a grateful Harry Smith, who nodded the ball into an empty net.
As the match entered second half stoppage time, Manager Kenny Jacket replaced Drinan with Ruel Sotiriou. Drinan was joined on the bench by his strike partner two minutes later when Harry Smith was replaced by Tyrese Omotoye.
Orient remained in control of the match for the rest of the match to earn themselves all three points against fellow promotion hopefuls, Swindon Town.
Attendance: 4020 (955)
Leyton Orient: Vigouroux, James, Clay, Smith (Omotoye 90’), Kemp, Archibald, Mitchell, Drinan (Sotiriou 90’), Pratley (c), Beckles, Ogie
Subs unused: Byrne, Happe, Thompson, Young
Goals: Drinan 19’, 59’, Smith 64’, 82’
Yellows: Clay 12’, Kemp 45+2’, Beckles 56’, Ogie 76’
Swindon Town: Wollacott, Odimayo, Iandolo, Conroy, Crichlow (Williams 72’), Gladwin, Simpson, Payne, McKirdy (Mitchell-Lawson 75’), Kesler Hayden, Reed
Subs unused: Ward, Lyden, Gilbert, Hunt, East.
Goals: McKirdy 42’
Yellows: McKirdy 64’, Reed 83’