Izale McLeod’s 17th league goal of the season from the penalty spot helped Crawley move out of the bottom four.

The former MK Dons striker was brought down by Orient full back Luke O’Neil in the 33rd minute. McLeod stepped up and converted to move the Red Devils to 19th; 1 point above the relegation zone. The defeat for the O’s leaves their safety hopes in exactly the same position as before the match as every side apart from Crawley lost. Orient sit 3 points from safety but sides up to 16th are involved with the relegation shake-up.

Orient started the brighter but both sides struggled to cope with the windy conditions. Josh Wright volleyed wide for the O’s while McLeod dragged a shot wide after Orient failed to deal with aerial balls into their box. The O’s began to grow into the game and were on top for a substantial period in the first half. Chris Dagnall had two shots saved while Cox went close, before a massive goal mouth scramble somehow failed to result in a goal for the away side. Danger signs were there for the O’s with Gavin Tomlin and McLeod heading wide before the penalty incident just after 30 minutes.

McLeod was found on the left, his chest took him inside O’Neil and the on loan Burnley defender brought him down. McLeod calmly slotted home. Crawley could have doubled their lead 6 minutes later but Alex Ciask was a full stretch to stop Anthony Wordsworth curler.

Orient continued with the majority of possession but failed to grab the important equaliser. Gavin Tomlin went inches wide to scoring a second 30 seconds after the break but his shot went wide. Brian Jensen came on for Lewis Price at the start of the second half and the veteran keeper kept the 3 points in Crawley. Jensen pulled off good saves from David Mooney, Ryan Hedges, Marvin Bartley and Chris Dagnall which prevented Orient from grabbing a point.

Crawley Town

Lewis Price 6 – Made some good saves in first half, struggled after picking up the injury, replaced at half time
Lewis Young 6.5 – Dealt well with Cox’s threat in both halves, dragged out of position by Dagnall but accomplished performance
Darren Wood 7 – Won almost every aerial ball played forward by Orient, controlled defence well. Kept good shape in the second half
Richard Wood 7 – Won the battle with Henderson, troubled slightly in first half but relatively comfortable
Sonny Bradley 6.5 – Dealt well with threat of Hedges in both halves, occasionally dragged out of position
Gavin Tomlin 6.5 – Supported attacks well, could have scored twice with efforts which would have made result more comfortable. Replaced after 60 minutes
Lee Fowler 6.5 – Over run at times in middle of midfield but won nearly every 50/50 ball. Kept very good shape went Orient on top in second half. Collected balls from centre halves as they looked to play out from the back
Anthony Wordsworth 7.5 ­– Continues to impress in loan spell. Prevented from goal by Ciask save, a outlet in second half for Crawley, carried ball well with experience helping his side
Ryan Dickson 6.5 – Helped full back well to prevent Hedges threat, good battle with O’Neil but didn’t stop crosses from the full back throughout the match
Mathias Pogba 6.5 – Linked well with McLeod in first half, played slightly deeper than McLeod trying to play onto Wright to prevent him coming out
Izale McLeod 7 – Grabbed the important goal for Crawley, pulled on to both full backs with the aerial ball. Should have been booked in second half for diving and persistent fouling

Substitutes

Brian Jensen 7.5 – Kept his side in the game in second half. Great saves from Mooney and Hedges as pressure mounted on his side
Marvin Elliot 6 – Introduced after 60 minutes as Crawley went 4-5-1 to protect lead. Slight outlet in remaining minutes, continued with good shape in the side
Lanre Oyebanjo N/A – Introduced in stoppage time

Leyton Orient

Alex Ciask 7 – Important save at 1-0 from Wordsworth, not really troubled apart from that. Dealt reasonably well with crossing apart from 1 incident in first half
Luke O’Neil 6.5 – Got forward well and put in some teasing crosses in first half but quality of crosses reduced as match went on. Showed inexperience conceding the penalty. Booked
Nathan Clarke 6.5 – Struggled winning the first ball against Pogba and McLeod in first half. Improved as match went on, continually improving since return. Booked
Scott Cuthbert 6 – Solid throughout, gap between himself and O’Neil for penalty could be looked at. Pushed forward in closing stages but failed to win anything
Andrea Dossena 6 – Pushed forward well in first half, not helped by Cox continually coming inside. Stayed in position throughout but ignored McAnuff when came on after several games linking very well with him.
Ryan Hedges 6.5 – Kept quiet for majority of the game by full back. Should have scored with a free header but headed over from 7 yards. Delivery needs to improve from the number of situations he was in. Booked
Marvin Bartley 6 – Battled well but lost majority of second ball as Crawley looked hungrier in wanting the win.
Josh Wright 6.5 – Tried to get the O’s moving in possession, spread play to each flank but still slows down pace of game but seems a signal from the bench.
Dean Cox 5.5 – Poor game from winger. Continually kept coming inside in first half, lacking link up with Dossena on left. Good shot tipped over by Price, fortunate to have started with McAnuff in good form
Chris Dagnall 6 – Not the finest finishing performance from the Scouse front man. Couple of chances in the first half at 0-0 which if been put away would have changed the game.
Darius Henderson 4 – Little or no impact from forward. Looked like he didn’t want to be there from minute 1. Surprised to last 70 minutes. Shouldn’t be in the team next week

Substitutes

David Mooney 5 – Introduced after 67 minutes. Played out of position in central midfield but struggled to make an impact. Shot well saved by Jensen
Jay Simpson 5 – Quiet after introduction with 20 minutes remaining, struggled to make impact with Crawley playing deep preventing his runs
Jobi McAnuff 5 – Also struggled after coming on. Ignored by Dossena several times down left. Should have started but delivery needs to improve

Men of the Match

Brian Jensen 7.5 – Kept his side in the game in second half. Great saves from Mooney and Hedges as pressure mounted on his side
Anthony Wordsworth 7.5 ­– Continues to impress in loan spell. Prevented from goal by Ciask save, a outlet in second half for Crawley, carried ball well with experience helping his side

 


About Author