Late goal denies Leyton Orient victory at Fleetwood Town

Darius Henderson headed Orient into the lead: Simon O'Connor

Darius Henderson headed Orient into the lead: Simon O'Connor

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Leyton Orient were denied victory at highflying Fleetwood Town after a late goal salvaged a 1-1 draw at Highbury Stadium this afternoon.

The O's took the lead before the break when Darius Henderson headed home his third goal of the season.

But Orient were denied maximum points when Fleetwood netted in the final ten minutes through substitute Stephen Dobbie's low strike. 

Russell Slade made plenty of changes to the side which pulled off a cup upset at Aston Villa on Wednesday. Captain Nathan Clarke returned to the defence while keeper Adam Legzdins was recalled.

Jobi McAnuff recovered from a thigh injury to take his place in midfield along with the midweek goalscorer Romain Vincelot. Henderson was also brought back into the attack alongside David Mooney.

The hosts came so close to an early breakthrough after David Ball set up Stephen Crainey but his fierce strike cannoned off the Orient bar.

Fleetwood's promising start continued and they had another effort through a Josh Morris header but it was straight at the keeper. 

Town kept up the pressure and Legzdins was forced to make a vital save to keep out David Ball's close-range effort before the ball was eventually cleared. 

The visitors started to build up a bit more possession and fired in their first effort through Clarke but his ambitious volley flew over the bar. 

Fleetwood still looked the more dangerous side and Steven Schumacher flashed a free-kick just past the post. 

Orient struck the woodwork after 25 minutes when keeper Chris Maxwell completely missed the ball and Mathieu Baudry headed against the post. 

Henderson had a couple of chances but both his headers were straight at keeper Maxwell.

But the former Nottingham Forest striker made no mistake after 34 minutes when he headed McAnuff's free-kick into the net for the opener.

Lloyd James found himself in space outside the area but the midfielder's strike was comfortably held by the keeper. 

Ball had an opportunity for the Cod Army but he turned and fired a shot into the arms of Legzdins. 

The visitors had a huge let off in the second half when Legzdins could only parry Ball's shot straight at Jamie Proctor and he fired home but the offside flag saved Orient.

Slade's side came close to doubling their lead when Dean Cox sent in a cross but Mooney's header was pushed onto the bar by Maxwell. 

Legzdins was forced to make a decent save as he tipped Morris' long-range strike over the crossbar. 

The O's made their first change when Bradley Pritchard replaced McAnuff with less than 20 minutes left.

But Fleetwood grabbed an 83rd minute equaliser when substitute Dobbie fired a low strike past Legzdins.

Orient immediately introduced Jay Simpson in place of Henderson while Elliot Omozusi was taken off injured with Shane Lowry coming on.

The hosts almost snatched an injury time winner but Legzdins produced a vital save to block Gareth Evans' effort and ensure Orient earned a point.

Fleetwood Town: Maxwell; McLaughlin, Pond, Jordan, Crainey; Evans, Schumacher, Sarcevic (Blair, 82), Morris; Ball (Dobbie, 71), Proctor

Subs not used: Davies, Murdoch, Roberts, Hogan, Campbell

Leyton Orient: Legzdins; Omozusi (Lowry, 87), Clarke, Baudry, Cuthbert; Cox, James, Vincelot, McAnuff (Pritchard, 73); Mooney, Henderson (Simpson, 84)

Subs not used: Lee, Bartley, Dagnall, Woods

Referee: R Clarke 

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