Blackman stunner fires Sheffield United to win over Leyton Orient
A stunning strike from Nick Blackman fired Sheffield United to a 1-0 win at Leyton Orient this afternoon.
The match was stuck in a stalemate for the first half but the decisive breakthrough came just before the hour mark when Blackman hit an unstoppable strike into the top corner.
The O's almost grabbed an equaliser through Lisbie's header which was superbly saved but Sheffield United held out to take maximum points from their visit to London.
Orient named an unchanged side for the visit of United after their excellent 2-1 win at Walsall on Tuesday night.
The visitors had an early shot at Brisbane Road by Tony McMahon's long-range strike flew harmlessly over Ryan Allsop's bar.
Sheffield United suffered a setback when goalkeeper Mark Howard went down with an injury and he was replaced in goal by George Long.
The away side were looking dangerous and they created another opportunity when the ball was crossed to Blackman but he hooked his effort well over the bar.
Orient were looking relatively comfortable against United but were still yet to test substitute goalkeeper Long.
The visitors had another effort on goal but McMahon's long-range effort was straight into Allsop's arms.
The O's had a rare first-half attack but Dean Cox's right wing cross was confidently plucked out of the air by Long.
Orient nearly opened the scoring when Ben Chorley headed a corner towards goal but his effort was blocked by a defender.
United had a late opportunity in the first half when the ball fell to Dave Kitson but the striker's effort was surprisingly tame and drifted wide of the target.
Russell Slade made a change at the break as he introduced striker Michael Symes in place of Jimmy Smith.
Sheffield United opened the scoring with an outstanding strike which came totally out of the blue. The ball fell to Blackman and the visiting player curled a stunning effort from the edge of the area into the top corner.
The hosts needed to respond and had an opportunity but Anthony Griffith snatched at his effort and it was high and wide of the target.
United had a golden chance to put clear daylight between the sides but captain Michael Doyle's effort was well saved by Allsop's legs.
Orient created their best chance of the game and were unlucky not to find an equaliser. Lee Cook put in a teasing cross and Lisbie's header was brilliantly saved by stand-in keeper Long.
This was a welcome response from the home side and they almost tested the keeper from a Cook free-kick which flew narrowly past the post.
Chorley received his fifth yellow card of the season for a challenge on Marcus Williams. The defender will now miss the midweek Johnstone's Paint Trophy game with Barnet.
The O's introduced Ryan Brunt in place of Lisbie as they searched for an equalising goal at Brisbane Road.
Slade made his final change going into the last ten minutes as Lloyd James replaced Martin Rowlands.
Orient were handed five minutes of injury time but could not find the equaliser as they were beaten for the second consecutive match at Brisbane Road.
Leyton Orient: Allsop; McSweeney, Sawyer, Chorley, Clarke; Cox, Griffith, Smith (Symes, HT), Cook, Rowlands (James, 81); Lisbie (Brunt, 78)
Subs not used: Baudry, Laird, Odubajo, Mooney
Sheffield United: Howard (Long, 11); McMahon, Maguire, Hill, Williams; Flynn, Doyle, McDonald; Gallagher, Blackman (Cresswell, 83), Kitson (Porter, 83)
Subs not used: Westlake, Miller, McAllister, McFadzean
Referee: David Phillips