Leyton Orient travel to league leaders Fleetwood Town this weekend for the first meeting in the clubs’ history. The hosts have made a strong start to the new season, but Orient will be buoyed by their League Cup win against Aston Villa in mid-week. Here we preview Saturday’s game:
[textmarker color=”E80202″ type=”background color”]Fleetwood Town[/textmarker]
Top scorer: Antoni Sarcevic 14 League Two: 4th FA Cup: 2nd round League Cup: 1st round Cards: 60 Yellow 1 Red
Last season Fleetwood Town were promoted to the third tier of English football for the first time in their history. Graham Alexander’s side spent almost all of the campaign inside the top seven, but they had to settle for a play-off place after finishing in fourth place on 76 points, five points behind Rochdale and Scunthorpe who achieved automatic promotion.
A Matty Blair goal proved to be enough to defeated York City over two legs, setting up a play-off final clash against Burton Albion. The final was another close game that was settled by a single goal. Top scorer Antoni Sarcevic scored a free-kick with a quarter-of-an-hour remaining to send the Cod Army up to League One.
[tabs title1=”IN” text1=”Danny Andrews (Macclesfield Town, Undisclosed), Keith Southern (Huddersfield Town), Jamie Proctor (Crawley Town), Stephen Crainey (Wigan Athletic), Josh Morris (Blackburn Rovers, Loan), Adam Campbell (Newcastle United, Loan), Stephen Dobbie (Crystal Palace, Loan)..” tabs title2=”OUT” text2=”Shaun Beeley (Morecambe), Alan Goodall (Morecambe), Junior Brown (Oxford United),Jon Parkin.” ]
Top scorer: Jamie Proctor 3 League One: 1st FA Cup: N/A League Cup: 1st round Cards: 6 Yellow 0 Red
Fleetwood have quickly adjusted to life in League One. The Cod Army are unbeaten in their four league games so far this term, of which they have won three, leaving them at the top of League One on 10 points. They began the season with a 2-1 win over Crewe and they followed that up with a 1-0 win at Notts County and a 2-0 win at Scunthorpe.
Their only defeat so far this term came in the opening round of the League Cup. They lost by a goal to nil against Rotherham and therefore they didn’t have a fixture in midweek.
Their last match was against Chesterfield at Highbury and the two sides played out a goalless draw.
Last lineup: Maxwell, McLaughlin, Hogan, Pond, Crainey, Evans, Morris, Schumacher, Ball (Campbell 81′), Proctor, Sarcevic (Blair 72′)
Subs: Davies, Murdoch, Creswell, Allen, Hughes, Campbell, Blair
The Cod Army will be without striker Jamille Matt as he suffered a serious knee injury during pre-season.
Experienced midfielder Keith Southern has resumed light training following a hernia problem, however his lack of fitness means he is unlikely to feature.
Stephen Dobbie could be available again after recovering from an ankle problem and Stephen Jordan, Jeff Hughes and Mark Roberts are all thought to be close to returning to action too.
[textmarker color=”4E65C2″ type=”background color”]Leyton Orient[/textmarker]
It was a night to remember on Wednesday as Orient recorded their first ever win at Villa Park, 40 years after their last visit, knocking Aston Villa out of the League Cup. Paul Lambert made changes to his side, but they weren’t lacking in experience and Russell Slade rotated his team as well.
Orient worked hard to limit the home side’s opportunities, but Villa were able to break through at times and had they been more accurate they could well have progressed. However, the O’s were able to trouble the Aston Villa defence and they had a goal ruled out for offside when Jay Simpson finished off a Baudry header from close range.
After just four minutes on the pitch, Romain Vincelot grabbed the winning goal late on, sending the O’s through to round three. Bradley Pritchard played the ball to the back post and the Frenchman headed home to give the travelling fans a great cup upset to celebrate.
The O’s haven’t lost since the opening day of the season, but they have still only managed one league win so far. Three consecutive clean sheets suggest that Russell Slade has rectified the defensive problems that plagued his side in the early matches this term but he now needs his strikers to start firing.
Orient’s impressive performance has created some selection headaches for the manager, who praised the strength of his squad following the victory.
Kevin Lisbie is on the sidelines due to the shoulder injury he suffered against Bristol City and Slade revealed this week that the striker may need surgery.
Jobi McAnuff and Gary Sawyer are also injury concerns ahead of Saturday’s game. McAnuff missed the League Cup tie due to a thigh problem, while Sawyer had to be substituted after suffering a knock to his knee.
Shaun Batt has been on the sidelines since the last round of the League Cup during which he sustained a calf injury, however his return to action is thought to be imminent.
Though all of the players that came into the team on Wednesday gave a very good account on themselves, Gary Woods, Shane Lowry and Bradley Pritchard were stand out performers as they staked their claim for a place in the starting lineup. However, regulars such as Nathan Clarke, Scott Cuthbert, Romain Vincelot, Darius Henderson and Adam Legzdins will have benefited from the rest in mid-week and it seems likely that most, if not all of them will be recalled to the starting lineup.
[textmarker color=”000000″ type=”background color”]Match Officials[/textmarker]
Referee: Richard Clark
Assistants: Mark Astley and Matthew Corlett
Fourth Official: Mick Russell