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Match Reports

Report and reaction: Robins 1-2 Leyton Orient

16 December 2023

Match Reports

Report and reaction: Robins 1-2 Leyton Orient

16 December 2023

The Robins suffered late heartbreak at the Completely-Suzuki Stadium, falling to a 2-1 defeat to Leyton Orient this afternoon.

Ben Williams was sent off for two bookable offences early in the first half but that didn’t faze the Robins who went ahead through Will Goodwin’s penalty.

However, with the clock ticking down Shaq Forde’s and Ethan Galbraith’s shots were diverted into the Robins goal via wicked deflections to give the visitors all three points.

“It’s very raw at the minute,” said Robins manager Darrell Clarke post-match.

“We’re devastated to come away with nothing as I thought the boys were magnificent  with 10 men for such a long period of the game.

“Like I said to the lads, sometimes in football it can kick you down but it’s how you respond.”

The Robins started the game on the front foot with Will Ferry displaying some quick feet to beat his man down the left hand side before flashing a ball across the six yard box that captain Sean Long lifted over.

The afternoon took a turn for the worse after 18 minutes when defender Williams was booked twice within a minute and subsequently given his marching orders by referee Tom Reeves.

Orient began to grow in confidence and Darren Pratley rattled the crossbar from close range with his header from a Theo Archibald corner.

But despite the man disadvantage, it was the Robins who dictated play in the second half as George Lloyd saw a header cleared away, Tom Pett’s free-kick whistled over and Goodwin saw a volley held by O's keeper Sol Brynn.

The pressure on the visitors continued to mount and told in the 67th minute after more clever footwork from Ferry saw him burst between two men before Pratley brought him down in the box.

Goodwin stepped up for the resulting penalty and blasted it down the middle with Brynn diving to his right, to net his fourth goal in as many games.

Orient stepped up their attack and after a pair of unthreatening shots from Ruel Sotiriou, substitute Forde’s shot was diverted into his own net by the unfortunate Long seconds before added time.

And deep into that added time, Southwood rushed off his line to deny Sotiriou before Galbraith’s shot deflected in off Curtis Davies, leaving the goalkeeper stranded and Town empty handed.

CHELTENHAM TOWN (3-5-2): Southwood; Davies, Freestone, B. Williams; Long (c), Sercombe (Smith 29), Bonds, Pett (Thompson 83), Ferry; Lloyd (Keena 83), Goodwin. Subs not used: Pardington (Gk), Bradbury, Peupion, Butler-Oyedeji.

LEYTON ORIENT (4-2-3-1): Brynn; Brown, Beckles, Happe, Hunt (James 65); Pratley (Forde 74), El Mizouni (Sanders 84); Sotiriou, Moncur (Galbraith 65), Archibald; Agyei (Pigott 65). Subs not used: Howes (Gk), Turns.


ATTENDANCE: 3,887 (461 away)

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