The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Con­nor Armstrong

IAN Hen­don was left an­gered by the man­ner of Ley­ton Ori­ent’s de­feat at Crawley Town as his side’s poor form con­tin­ued.

The O’s have won just one of their last eight games and slipped down to sev­enth af­ter be­gin­ning the day in third.

Hav­ing taken the lead through Jay Simp­son, goals from Roarie Dea­con and Mitch Han­cox put Crawley in con­trol be­fore a con­tro­ver­sial mo­ment on the brink of half-time.

The hosts were awarded a penalty when Rhys Mur­phy went down un­der Alan Dunne’s chal­lenge and the de­fender was sent off be­fore Si­mon Wal­ton con­verted.

“It looked like a penalty, but I don’t think it was a send­ing off,” said head coach Hen­don.

“When you look closely at the video, the lad’s al­ready on his way down be­fore Dun­ney gets any­where near him.

“We’ve taken the game to them for long pe­ri­ods, even in the sec­ond half with ten men. Just de­fen­sively, we didn’t switch on.

“We were in con­trol, but then we con­ceded the goals. A cou­ple of them are sloppy in the way they’ve gone in. Alex Cisak has got to do bet­ter for the sec­ond one.”

Crawley had only found the net in one of their six pre­vi­ous home league games but ended that run in spec­tac­u­lar fash­ion.

Simp­son put Ori­ent in front af­ter just eight min­utes, con­vert­ing af­ter Ol­lie Palmer’s header hit the post and cross­bar.

It should have been 2-0 when an un­der-hit ball back to Crawley keeper Cal­lum Pre­ston was seized upon by Simp­son, but he lifted his at­tempt wide of the post. Ori­ent went into cruise con­trol but were pun­ished when Dea­con sent a low ef­fort in via the far post.

The home side did have the ball in the back of the net mo­ments later, but Palmer was ad­judged to be off­side be­fore Simp­son tapped in. Crawley then surged into the lead in the 37th minute, when Ori­ent failed to deal with a cor­ner and cor­ner-kick taker Han­cox drilled the ball in­side Cisak’s near post.

Ori­ent’s self-de­struc­tion con­tin­ued with Dunne’s red card and Wal­ton send­ing Cisak the wrong way from the spot.

Hen­don re­placed Palmer with Mill­wall loa­nee John Mar­quis at half-time but it was Crawley who al­most scored again only for a fine save from Cisak to deny Matt Har­rold.

Ori­ent upped the pres­sure and re­duced the deficit when Simp­son fired in on the turn.

And a late strike from Sammy Moore was hacked away as the hosts held on to record a first home league win of the sea­son.

“I’m de­lighted for the play­ers and the sup­port­ers,” said Crawley boss Mark Yates.

“We didn’t start par­tic­u­larly well and they showed what a de­cent side they are.

“We had a lit­tle bit of luck. They could have gone two up when Simp­son went through and put it wide, but that’s prob­a­bly the first time a mis­take hasn’t cost us in ten games.”

“Fif­teen min­utes later we turned the game on its head, we scored some good goals and looked a de­cent at­tack­ing out­fit and that’s what we want.

“Credit to the play­ers, they stuck at it and we got what we de­served.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

POINT­ING THE WAY: Si­mon Wal­ton cel­e­brates scor­ing Crawley's third goal from the penalty spot STAR MAN MITCH HAN­COX Crawley

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