Orient came away from Deepdale on Saturday with three points to spoil Graham Westley’s first game as North End manager. Goals from Marc Laird and Jimmy Smith ensured that Orient moved into the top half of the League One table.
Having previously met Westley twice this season with Stevenage, the travelling Orient faithful had an idea of how Preston would set out and we weren’t disappointed as Preston set out using the long ball at any possible opporunity.
Like much of the game, Orient were the better side in the first half and had the ball in the back of the net from David Mooney, only to see his goal chalked off by a late flag from the linesman on the far side. A header on by Kevin Lisbie saw Mooney round Thorstan Stuckmann in the North End goal and slot into an empty net, but the Irishman was adjudged to have been in an offside position.
A clever free kick from Matt Spring, was recieved by Dean Cox in space who turned and hit a vicious strike at goal that Stuckmann could only parry.
The second half was a more mixed affair, Preston saw more of the ball but couldn’t turn their possession into a solid chance on goal, whereas Orient used their possession to carve out chances on the North End goal.
Orient finally scored after 67 minutes thanks to fantastic football. Leon McSweeney combined with Dean Cox to pass to Marc Laird, who twisted and turned before sending in a delightful shot past Stuckmann.
It took Orient thirteen minutes to score their second this time through Jimmy Smith. Dean Cox was involved again as his cross from the left wasn’t cleared and the ball fell at the feet of Smith who slotted past the static Stuckmann.
‘2-0 to the Football team’ was the cry from the away end and that was correct, even to the point that the Preston fans booed their side off.
12 – Lee Butcher
6 – Terrell Forbes
14 – Leon McSweeney
5 – Scott Cuthbert
26 – Dean Leacock
7 – Dean Cox
17 – Marc Laird
16 – Matthew Spring
20 – Jimmy Smith
39 – David Mooney
9 – Kevin Lisbie
Substitued after 89 minutes.
18 – Jonathan Tehoue
Came on for Kevin Lisbie after 89 minutes.
1 – Jamie Jones
– Syam Ben Youssef
0 – Jamie Cureton
5 – George Porter