Tuesday 11th March 2014
Port Vale v Leyton OrientAt Vale Park
Attendance: 4,235 including 224 visiting supporters
PORT VALE:Chris Neal, Adam Yates, Carl Dickinson, Chris Robertson, Chris Birchall, Anthony Griffith, Doug Loft, Jennison Myrie-Williams, Ben Williamson, Tom Pope. SUBS: Sam Johnson, Daniel Jones, Louis Dodds, Jack Grimmer, Chris Lines, Billy Knott, Jordan Hugill
LEYTON ORIENT:Eldin JakuPovic, Elliott Omozusi, Gary Sawyer, Romain Vincelot, Scott Cuthbert, Dean Cox, Lloyd James, David Mooney, Moses Odubajo, Nathan Clarke, Chris Dagnall. SUBS: Kevin Lisbie, Jake Larkins, Shaun Batt, Yohann Lasimant, Marvin Bartley, Robbie Simpson, Jamie Ness.
Promotion hopefuls Leyton Orient took al three points with a goal in each half to keep up their slim hopes of automatic promotion.
It was the first time they had tasted victory at Vale Park since November 1956, but it was npartly down to Vale's inability to hammer home their superiority in the first half of the game.
Vale made one change to the side that beat Carlisle United at the weekend with Adam Yates returning at right back, replacing Jack Grimmer, who found himself on the bench.
It was a confident start from the home side, who defended well when asked and they were certainly not afraid to put the visitors on the back foot.
Ben Williamson dragged his shot wide as Vale looked to take advantage of the panic in the Orient defence after Jakupovic had come off his line to collect but made a hash of it.
In the early stages of the game Vale certainly had the upper hand and in the 19th minute the visitors decided to make a change, bringing on Marvin Bartley to replace Romain Vincelot.
In a rare attack for the visitors Dean Cox went close with a well drilled effort from the edge of the box which was not too far off hitting the target.
A shot from outside the box from Lloyd James was saved quite comfortably by Chris Neal, who hadn’t had an awful lot to do in the opening half hour of the game.
The visitors had showed signs they could be dangerous, but in general Vale had handled them well and limited their chances to long range shots.
GOAL:Sure enough they opened the scoring when Adubajo passed to DEAN COX, who hit affirm shot from the edge of the box which nudged the underside of the crossbar on its way into the net.
It was rough justice from a Port Vale point of view, but although Vale had showed more than the visitors up to that point, Jakupovic in the Orient goal had not seen a lot of the action.
An error early in the second half by Carl Dickinson almost gifted the visitors a second gla but thankfully the ball ran out for a goal kick before Orient could capitalise on it.
Then at the other end Doug Loft almost scored with a close range header but it took a deflection on the line and Vale were forced to settle for a corner.
The visitors looked menacing at the start of the second half, putting Vale under almost constant pressure and it paid off in the 57th minute.
GOAL:Lloyd James sent in a flag kick from the right and NATHAN CLARKE towered above everybody to send in a powerful downward header which Neal seemed to have dealt with, but he appeared to fumble and the ball ended up in the net.
Vale responded two minutes later with a double substitution – Chris Birchall was replaced by Billy Knott and Chris Lines came off the bench for Anthony Griffith.
Vale did have the ball in the net in the 70th minute but the Assistant Referee held is flag high and it was chalked off for offside.
Then a minute later a curling shot from Billy Knott rattled the crossbar with Jakupovic well beaten, then seconds later Tom Pope scored what appeared to be a perfectly good goal, only to discover that the referee had blown his whistle as he hit it because a visiting defender lay injured inside the box.
Vale had really got their tails up at this stage of the game and in the 75th minute a 25 yard free kick from Jennison Myrie-Williams was heading for the top corner, but Jakupovic sprang across his goal to make the save at the expense of a corner.
A mistake by Chris Rbertson then presented Chris Dagnall with a golden opportunity to wrap things up for the visitors with a third goal, but he somehow sliced the ball wide from close range.
Vale made their third substitution in the 84th minute when Jordan Hugill came on to replace Jennison Myrie-Williams..
Judupovic made another decent save to deny Doug Loft, getting down low to his left to keep out the Vale skipper’s well struck shot from just inside the area.