Leyton Orient will be hoping to follow up Saturday’s draw against the league leaders with a win over fellow strugglers Chester. Here we preview Tuesday night’s game:
On Saturday, Ross Embleton oversaw a creditable draw against in-form league leaders Dover Athletic in his first game in charge.
The visitors made a bright start as James Alabi was played in on goal but Sam Sargeant was alert enough to make an important save. However, Dover took the lead mid-way through the first-half. Alabi held off Widdowson and laid the ball off to Nortei Nortey who curled the ball into the far corner of the Orient goal.
Dover held their lead at the break, but Orient produced a spirited performance in the second-half.
There were warning signs for the visitors as Macauley Bonne had two efforts saved and blocked on the goal-line in quick succession.
Orient eventually found the equaliser with just over ten minutes to go. A counter-attack ended with Craig Clay checking back and firing a curling shot, which deflected into the Dover goal to make it 1-1.
The O’s then came agonizingly close to grabbing a winner when Bonne met James Dayton’s cross to the far post, however, Dover stopper Mitch Walker pulled off a great save to ensure that the score remained level.
Caprice Sendles-White Happe Widdowson
Brill, Ellis, Westbrooke, Mooney, Harrold
Charlie Grainger suffered a hip injury during the pre-match warm-up at the weekend and as a result, Sam Sargeant made his first start of the season and performed well.
The short-time frame is likely to mean that Grainger will miss out against Chester due to that injury and Sargeant will continue in the Orient goal in his absence. Goalkeeping coach and interim assistant manager Dean Brill is also likely to deputise on the bench as he did on Saturday.
Injured trio Josh Coulson (groin), George Elokobi (hamstring), and Charlie Lee (knee) remain out of action. However, Coulson was undergoing some work on the pitch before Saturday’s game so he may well be close to a return.
Ross Embleton opted to revert to a 4-5-1 for his first starting line-up, however, the O’s finished the game well with a 4-4-2 after the introduction of Matt Harrold from the bench. Therefore, Harrold may well earn a place in the starting line-up to face Chester.
National League: 19th FA Cup: 4th Q Round FA Trophy: 2nd Round Top scorer: James Alabi 17
Last term, Chester finished in 19th place in the National League, beating relegation by just two points.
Andy Halls (Macclesfield), Jordan Gough (Telford), John McCombe (Macclesfield), Kingsley James (Macclesfield), Lathaniel Rowe-Turner (Torquay), Ross Hannah (Barrow), Harry White (Solihull Moors), Jordan Archer (Stourbridge), Paul Turnbull (Barrow), Nathan Sheron (Fleetwood, Loan), Conor Mitchell (Burnley, Loan), Reece Hall-Johnson (Grimsby Town, Loan), Offrande Zanzala (Derby, Loan), Nyal Bell (Gateshead), Ryan Crump, Nathan Vaughan
Sam Hughes (Leicester, £131,000), Kane Richards (Dover), Johnny Hunt (Mansfield), Elliot Durrell (Macclesfield), James ALabi (Tranmere), Blaine Hudson (TNS), Luke George (Hartlepool), Evan Horwood (Bala Town), Tom Crawford (Runcorn, Loan), Will Marsh, Kieran Evans, Ross Killock
National League: 21st FA Cup: 4th Q Round Top scorer: Dawson, Hannah 4
Chester currently occupy the drop zone as they sit in 21st place in the National League, however, they are only three points behind the O’s and a two-goal margin of victory would see them move above Orient on Tuesday night.
Having won just one game in their first eight matches, Jon McCarthy was dismissed as Chester manager at the beginning of September.
Marcus Bignot was appointed later that month and he managed a win over Maidenhead in his first game in charge, giving Chester just their second victory of the campaign. However, since then the Blues have won just once more, with Bignot having overseen three draws and five defeats in his ten games in charge.
Chester are now without a win in their last four as they were pegged back against Bromley on Saturday.
Ross Hannah put Chester in front 14 minutes into the game as he beat the Bromley keeper with a low shot after working some space. However, Bromley cancelled out that goal immediately and Louis Dennis tucked the ball home after Alex Lynch parries Luke Wanadio’s shot.
Lynch, James, Halls, McCombe, Rowe-Turner, Gough, Turnbull, Dawson, Hannah, Akintunde, White.
Vaughan, Anderson, Bell, Rainey, Joyce.
Marcus Bignot could have a number of players absent for the trip to Brisbane Road.
Midfielder Paul Turnball is certain to miss out as he will serve a one-match suspension having been booked on five occasions this term.
Jordan Archer and Ryan Astles missed the trip to Bromley at the weekend due to groin and ankle injuries respectively and therefore they are likely to miss out again.
Harry White was added to the lengthy injury list after suffering a knock at the weekend. Reece Hall-Johnson, Tom Shaw and Craig Mahon are also currently out of action.
However, Chester were boosted by the return of John McCombe last time out.
Tuesday night’s game will be the first meeting between Leyton Orient and Chester FC following the visitors’ reformation in 2010.
The O’s last played the Chester under their former guise in February 2006. A Matt Lockwood penalty and a second-half goal from Paul Connor gave Orient an away win at the Deva Stadium.
Chester’s last trip to Brisbane Road in December 2005 ended in a 0-1 win for the visitors’ thanks to a Stuart Drummond goal.
Orient’s last home win over Chester was in April 2005. Efe Echanomi gave the hosts the lead and Matt Lockwood doubled Orient’s advantage from the penalty spot. In the second half, the visitors were then reduced to ten men as Sean Hessey saw red.
Overall, Orient had won 13 and drawn 7 of their meetings against Chester City, who won 10 of the 30 meetings with the O’s
Alexander Guy & Darin Geary