Leyton Orient 2 Maidstone United 0
Vanarama National League
By Rowland Lyons at the Matchroom Stadium
Two wins from their opening three games represents a solid start to the season, as David Mooney and Romauld Boco strikes sent plucky Maidstone back to east Kent pointless, last Saturday.
Despite creating an early chance, with Macaulay Bonne unable to get Joe Widdowson’s cross out of his feet, the Stones went on to dominate, with former Southend man, Joe Pigott bringing the best out of Orient No.1, Charlie Grainger, on 18 minutes.
In a half littered with fouls - giving the O’s a taste of what is likely to come, at this level, this season - Mooney and Jobi McAnuff both wasted half-chances from Grainger free-kicks.
McAnuff did at least draw a save from veteran, Lee Worgan on 43 minutes, but Stones ended the half the stronger with Alex Lawless making a superb last-ditch block to deny Tom Wraight.
The O’s were much brighter after the turnaround and after Bonne had twice gone agonizingly close, Mooney nodded home his second goal of the season - on the hour - from Janes Dayton’s curling cross.
Bonne and Mooney had further chances to calm the home support’s nerves, but a late Stones finally saw them have the ball in the net, but Jai Reason’s late strike was disallowed for offside.
The points were then sealed a minute into stoppage time when skipper, Charlie Lee’s fine run and pass allowed sub, Boco to glide home the ball, with his first touch.
Orient boss, Steve Davis, admitted: “That’s six points from two games. I’m delighted we went on to win the match. It’s nice to win - we try to win every game, getting as many points as we can, to settle the players down and get the crowd behind us.”
“I told the lads at the break that we needed to use the wings, as Maidstone were proving difficult to break down.”
“And, it took a bit of quality from James Dayton’s cross for the goal. Those sort of crosses are always difficult to defend.”
“You always need a second goal and once Charlie Lee had made the pass to Romuald Boco - I knew he would score as he has been doing that in training all time.”
Orient travel to Bromley this Tuesday (kick-off 7-45pm) and Davis concluded: “It’s on the 3G surface. I don’t like it, but I mustn’t get that dislike into the players’ heads, as they will only use it as an excuse.”
Goalscorer, Mooney: “I said to a few in the changing room that seven points from nine would have been the perfect start - but we’re happy with six points from these two wins.”
“Ten thousand fans have seen our two home games and they have stuck with us through thick and thin. They can see the way we are playing and we’re delighted the way things are going.”
Leyton Orient: Charlie Grainger, Jake Caprice, Josh Coulson, George Elokobi, Joe Widdowson, James Dayton, Alex Lawless, Charlie Lee (captain), Jobi McAnuff (Josh Koroma 78), James Dayton (Romauld Boco 85), David Mooney (Craig Clay 79), Macaulay Bonne. Subs (not used): Sam Sargeant (gk), Michael Clark.
Maidstone United: Lee Worgan, Seth Nana Twumasi, Alex Wynter, Josh Hare, Joe Anderson, Delano Sam-Yorke, Jack Paxman, Jai Reason, Tom Wright (Jack Richards 80), Reece Prestedge (Harley Willard 74), Joe Pigott. Subs (not used): Tommy Taylor (gk), Magnus Okuonghae, Harry Phipps.
Referee: Andy Bromley
Assistants: Andrew Humphries & Robert Evans
Fourth Official: Neil West.