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Watt’s late leveller for Bantams see’s Orient’s winless run stretch to 7 games

Elliot Watt’s 83rd minute volley rescued a point for the home side as Bradford and Leyton Orient battled out to a 1-1 draw.

The Utilia Energy Stadium was shown a quiet game of football until Darren Pratley’s side footed shot left Alex Bass rooted in the Bradford’s goal. This goal would be the O’s first since mid-December.

The travelling fans celebrations were cut to a halt however when the Scotsman Watt’s  volley levelled up the game for the Bantams, which is how the match ended despite Bradford’s last-minute efforts towards the end.

Kenny Jackett’s Leyton Orient are now left without a win in six league games however, the point today sees them climb up a spot to 14th, whilst Bradford’s late play off push stalls as they slouch down to 12th.

The first booking of the game came in the 23rd minute when the Bantams skipper Paudie O’Connor was carded for stopping a counterattack against the on-charging Harry Smith. The following free kick saw carnage in the box as Otis Khan whipped in a deep ball that left Bradford keeper Bass scrambling, being saved by the whistle of the ref awarding the Bantams with a free kick for pushing.

Jamie Walkers low drilled shot in the 28th minute seemed to be the first meaningful test for The O’s to defend, however a leg out from Omar Beckles deflected the shot out for a throw in. 

Andy Cooke nearly made it three goals in three league games as his half volley set from the chest of Matthew Foulds narrowly flew past the post from just outside the area just after the half hour mark.

The Bradford attacking bombardment continued in the 34th minute as dCentral Attacking Midfielder Levi Sutton used his tricky feet to beat his man at the edge of the box, laying it down the wing to Fould. Despite the poor delivery of the 24-year-old left-back which was met by the head of an Orient defender, the ball landed back to Sutton whose uninspired volley sailed over the roof of the net.

The half ended with another set piece for Jackett’s men, taken by Khan, who’s ball into the box from the halfway line was headed comfortably into the arms of Bass from Beckles.

The first half ended goalless and a disappointing one for both sides 

It was Bradford who started the second half looking like the sharper as Elliot Watt was constantly looking to feed Sutton on the right flank, whose cross blocked by Beckles. Bantam skipper O’Connor then squandered the best chance of the game so far from the resulting corner as his diving header creeped wide of the near post of Lawrence Vigouroux.

The first sub of the game saw Adams brings off winger Matty Daly for the former Jamaican international Theo Robinson, a change that highlighted Bradford’s attacking intent

It was the 68th minute that saw the deadlock finally broken by the former Fulham player and current Orient captain Pratley, as he saw the ball land at his feet on the 18-yard line from another Khan delivered free kick. All that was left to do was place it past the keeper as the 36-year-old buried it in the top corner with confidence and conviction. 

The goal from the O’s resulted in another attacking change for the home side as their new loanee Jamie Walker saw only his 5 appearances for the club cut short, being replaced by Alex Gilliead. 

Just moments later Adams rolled the dice the final time seeing attacker Tom Elliott come on for only his second appearance since joining the Bantams on loan from Salford. The departing player was Callum Cooke.

Just 7 minutes and added time away from securing their first win since mid-December, Leyton Orient let their one goal lead slip as Watt’s volley from roughly 20 yards out saw a massive deflection that helped it past the outstretched Vigouroux, levelling the game up for the Bantams.

With just minutes to go, Tom Elliott has a chance to nick the game for Bradford however is shot that was laid off from Sutton was hit too wildly, leaving the keeper just to watch the ball go over his crossbar. 

A penalty shout in the first minute of four added times was denied by referee Darren Handley as Cook was looked to be pulled down by the Orient number 15 Alex Mitchell.

The ref blew the game to a close in the fourth minute of added time. Bradford’s next game sees them travel to 15th place Harrogate, whilst the O’s welcome relegation fighters Colchester.

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