At last! Sheri’s got home win to toast

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By James Owens

JOHN SHERI­DAN made no at­tempt to dis­guise his re­lief as Notts County se­cured their first home win of the sea­son af­ter com­ing out on top in a lively sec­ond half against Ley­ton Ori­ent.

Strike duo Jonathan Forte and Jon Stead scored within two min­utes of each other early in the sec­ond pe­riod be­fore Louis Laing’s dis­missal and Paul McCal­lum’s late goal for Ori­ent put the hosts un­der pres­sure in the clos­ing stages.

But Sheri­dan’s men held on, with sub­sti­tute Aaron Collins’ goal putting the re­sult be­yond doubt in the dy­ing sec­onds.

“I’m just pleased we’ve got it over the line,” Sheri­dan ad­mit­ted. “It was an ex­cel­lent per­for­mance to get the first win at home against a good team.”

County edged a for­get­table first half and went ahead seven min­utes af­ter the restart when Forte met a fine right-sided cross from Matt Too­tle with a down­ward header. Ori­ent keeper Alex Cisak ap­peared to have saved, but the ref­eree’s as­sis­tant in­di­cated the ball had crossed the line be­fore he had reached it.

The im­pres­sive Stead dou­bled the ad­van­tage mo­ments later with an ex­cel­lent 25-yard strike into the bottom cor­ner.

Laing’s dis­missal for a sec­ond book­ing on 69 min­utes and Paul McCal­lum’s close-range header four min­utes from time set up a nervy fin­ish, but Wolves loa­nee Collins drove down the right su­perbly a minute into stop­page time be­fore cut­ting in­side to roll the ball be­yond Cisak.

“The send­ing-off gave us a bit of a scare, and they get a goal, but ob­vi­ously peo­ple will see on telly it’s a great third goal from Aaron,” Sheri­dan re­flected. “I’m chuffed to bits for the play­ers and the fans.”

Ori­ent boss Andy Hessen­thaler felt the game turned on the first goal, and while he told keeper Cisak he should have claimed the cross, he was adamant the ball did not cross the line.

“The keeper’s got to come and get it. He knows that, I’ve just told him that in the dress­ing room,” Hessen­thaler said.

“But it wasn’t over the line. I’ve al­ready seen it, and where the lines­man gives it for be­ing over the line, he’s not in line with it. He’s got to be 100 per cent sure.

“We were quite happy at half-time in terms of com­ing in at nil-nil away from home. ‘Keep a clean sheet and don’t give any­thing away early on in the sec­ond half ’ is what we say to the team pretty much ev­ery week. We’re say­ing it, but we’re not do­ing it.”

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