Nahki Wells once again grabbed the headlines with a stunning stoppage time free kick to earn City a share of the spoils. Lloyd James’ fabulous goal on the stroke of half time looked to be setting Orient on their way to another impressive victory but it wasn’t to be as City pushed and pushed and eventually got the goal they thoroughly deserved.
After a cagey opening ten minutes or so the crowd suddenly burst to life when Nahki Wells when down in the area under a challenge from Romain Vincelot; the appeal seemed a fair one by City but the referee didn’t seem to agree.
Robbie Simpson went close with an acrobatic effort from Lloyd James’ corner before Garry Thompson was kept out by Jamie Jones after latching onto Kyel Reid’s cross with a firm, low strike that headed towards the bottom corner.
City were having their fair share of chances in the early stages and after Gary Jones’ free kick was glanced on at the near post by Wells, James Hanson headed the ball narrowly wide of the target at the far post.
Moses Odubajo saw a promising chance go to waste when he stepped away from James Meredith before seeing his goal bound shot diverted over the bar by the out-stretched leg of Rory McArdle. Reid was having a positive start to the game and forced a good save from Jamie Jones when after Nathan Doye’s cross-shot squirmed out to him he fired a powerful first time shot towards goal from 20 yards out.
On the stroke of half time perhaps somewhat against the run of play, Orient took the lead in style. Lloyd James turned neatly just inside the corner of the area before curling an excellent shot over Jon McLaughlin and into the top corner of the goal.
The Bantams started the second half brightly and after Wells almost pounced on a loose ball in the area the ball came out to Doyle who saw a fierce shot deflected behind for a corner kick.
Lloyd James was having a great game for the visitors and it was his low cross that was almost turned in by both Shaun Batt and then Dean Cox as City fans breathed a sigh of relief to see the ball eventually cleared to safety.
Nathan Doyle was in on the act again a few minutes later when his shot was blocked on the line by an Orient defender after he’d met Hanson’s knock down following Mark Yeates’ cross, seconds earlier Doyle saw a header clawed away by Jamie Jones
Second half substitute Mark Yeates came close to firing City into the lead but his free kick from 25 yards out beat the wall but it couldn’t find the net as Jamie Jones held the ball well.
It naturally seemed to be City who were having more of the attacking play, obviously due to the fact they were a goal behind but they were almost undone on the counter attack by the visitors. Odubajo’s cross fell invitingly to Batt but he seemed to get his legs in a tangle and when his shot did eventually come in, it was tame and wide of the target.
The 5 minutes of additional time signalled by the 4th official raised the volume and intensity once again and after barely 60 seconds of these 5 minutes City were offered an opportunity to score. Mathieu Baudry was booked for shoving Wells to the ground just outside the area and he stepped up to curl the ball into the top corner to leave Jamie Jones motionless and raise the roof off the stadium. All in all a decent point against the leaders, especially considering how the game panned out.