Orient record first home win of 2018 with a convincing 3-0 win over Woking on Saturday afternoon.
A first half Macauley Bonne brace, followed by a James Brophy strike in the second sealed three points for the O's in E10.
Head Coach Justin Edinburgh made one change to the side who started the goalless draw at Eastleigh last weekend. Macauley Bonne returned to partner Matt Harrold in attack with Dan Holman dropping to the bench as the O’s lined up in a 4-4-2 formation.
In the reverse fixture on August 19th, a second half brace from Bonne secured all three points for the O’s in a 2-0 victory.
Orient got the game underway and began on the front foot as they passed the ball with confidence and looked to get in behind the Woking defence. Unfortunately, they were forced into an early switch with Harrold going off injured inside six minutes and Holman coming on to replace him.
Moments later, the O’s registered their first effort on target when Jobi McAnuff’s free-kick was met by George Elokobi whose header was comfortably saved by Nathan Baxter in the Woking goal. However, at the other end Woking almost took the lead in spectacular fashion when Jason Banton let fly from range only to see his strike come back off the crossbar.
Then, the O’s did succeed in breaking the deadlock on ten minutes. Holman nicked the ball from Joey Jones on the edge of the box before feeding Bonne who was denied at his first attempt, but buried his second low into the bottom corner to give Orient a 1-0 lead.
This was turning into an end-to-end encounter with plenty of action inside the opening quarter of an hour. Charlie Carter drove forward for the visitors but his effort was pushed away by Dean Brill in the Orient goal.
With an air of confidence about their play, the O’s won themselves a penalty on 16 minutes. James Brophy’s mazy run was halted by Jones who was subsequently booked, before Bonne fired the ball low into the bottom left corner from 12 yards to double the O’s advantage.
After a thrilling start to the match, the pace of the game slowed midway through the half. However, the O’s could have notched a third on 35 minutes when Brophy’s teasing cross found an off-balance McAnuff at the back post who angled his shot wide of the mark.
Minutes later Holman, who had worked solidly since coming onto the field as an early sub, came inside his marker before stinging the palms of Baxter who held onto the shot. However, Holman was next to receive a booking after a late challenge on Matt Young five minutes before the break.
At half-time, the O’s could reflect on a good first half performance having seized the initiative with two early goals whilst remaining resolute in defence to resist Woking’s attempts at a fightback.
The visitors got the second half underway and had the first chance from a corner which dropped to Louis Theophanous who was denied by Brill before the ball was scrambled away. Then, Anthony Cook forced a smart save from the O’s keeper once again with a low free-kick.
Orient’s first chance of the half came from some great work by Brophy down the left, he picked out McAnuff on the edge of the box whose effort was blocked in the middle of the goal.
Sadly, Woking’s Regan Charles-Cook was stretchered off midway through the half leaving them to play the last twenty minutes with ten men having made all three of their substitutions.
With the game approaching its final ten minutes, the O’s made sure of the victory when Brophy deservedly added his name to the scoresheet. He collected the ball from just outside the box, evaded his marker before drilling the ball past a helpless Baxter to give the O’s a 3-0 lead.
With five minutes of normal time remaining, the O’s were in total control of the game as they kept possession and looked to add further goals to their tally for the afternoon.
Dean Bril was called in to action late on when Charlie Carter's header looked certain for goal before the Orient 'keeper's diving hand palmed the ball away from danger.
Final chance of the game fell to Dan Holman who reached the ball before Baxter but his attempted lob dropped just the wrong side of the post as the O's saw the game out after a lengthy period of stoppage time.
ORIENT: Brill, Widdowson, Elokobi, McAnuff (C) (Koroma 81’), Bonne (Mooney 90+4), Coulson, Clay, Harrold (Holman 6’), Brophy, Adams, Ling.
SUBS: Grainger, Ekpiteta.
BOOKED: Clay (24’), Holman (40’), Elokobi (49’)
GOALS: Bonne (10’, 16’), Brophy (79’)
WOKING: Baxter, Ralph, Jones (Wynter 45’), Staunton, Theophanous, Banton, Charles-Cook, Carter, Saraiva (Cook 45’), Young (Edwards 61’) Ferdinand.
SUBS: Ramsay, Young.
BOOKED: Jones (16’), Charles-Cook (45 + 1), Ferdinand (55’)
REFEREE: Savvas Yianni
ATTENDANCE: 5,673 (479 Woking)