Harlow Town 1 Leyton Orient 6
By Rowland Lyons at the Harlow Arena
After a summer of uncertainty, over 1,000 Orient fans were just delighted to see their side back in action, on Saturday. The five-goal victory margin was the icing on the cake.
Junior Dadson opened the scoring for the Hawks, but the O’s moved up a gear courtesy of David Mooney, Tammy Abrahams strikes and second-half doubles for Trialist Josh Taylor and new-signing, Macaulay Bonne.
An encouraging Orient start saw Abrahams and Trialist go close, before - and against the run of play - Dadson fire rhe part-timers ahead, on 22 minutes with a fine drive, that beat Charlie Grainger through a sea of legs.
But, the east Londoners were level within three minute when Mooney - the best player on the pitch - side-footed home after good work by new-boy, Christian Scales.
Mooney then went close, before the O’s to a 41st minute lead, after Steven Alzate lost his marker, then found Mooney’s head, before his nodded effort rebounded out kindly for Abrahams to drill home with aplomb.
Town almost levelled on the stroke of half-time, with Reece Dobson inches away with a glancing header.
But, a wholly-changed Orient eleven ran riot after the turnaround, edging further ahead within five minutes when a Trialist - later revealed as Josh Taylor - netted after good Josh Koroma approach play.
Kicking down the slope, the east Londoners’ relentless pressure finally reaped dividends on 66 minutes, when ex-Colchester man, Bonne headed home Trialist, Michael Gash’s towering centre.
Despite themselves making wholesale changes, Harlow were unable to stem the flood of Orient attacks and Bonne grabbed his second, and his side’s fifth goal, eleven minutes from time from an excellent Taylor pass.
Five minutes from time it was perhaps fitting that Taylor should cap an excellent display with the goal of the game - a stunning 30-yarder that gave sub. Town keeper, Patrick Lee, no chance.
New boss, Steve Davis, said: “We showed a lot of character - for a young side - coming back from one-nil down and David Mooney lead the way with the goal - he knows where the goal is.”
“With twenty-two players out there today, it gave me the opportunity to look at systems - 4-4-2, 4-3-3 or 4-3-2-1 - and the varying surfaces we will be playing on - like today’s being similar to what we can expect on the opening day of the season [at Sutton] and in front of the cameras.”
Davis concluded: “It’s only a little step forward today and there is still a lot of work to do. But, it was good seeing so many smiling faces - especially after what has been a difficult last three years for the fans.”
Goalscorer Mooney added: “It’s great to be back at the club. I never really wanted to leave in the first place - but it’s now a case of looking forward.”
“The manager is getting his points over to the squad and we all understand what he wants.”
Harlow Town: David Hughes (Patrick Lee 52), Jimmy Shepherd, Jack Wilkinson, James Baker (Charlie Dickens 52), Craig Pope (captain), Stanley Mugno, Jared Small (Daniel Blair-Cornwall 62), Syrus Gordon, Alex Read (Toby O 80), Reece Dobson (Kyle Thompson 68), Junior Dadson (Robbie Martin 75).
Leyton Orient: Charlie Grainger, Jake Caprice, Christian Scales, Aron Pollok, Alex Lawless, Daniel Happe, Henry Ochieng, Tristan Abrahams, Steven Alzate, David Mooney, Trialist.
Sam Sargeant, Joe Widdowson, Charlie Lee, Trialist (Kyle Taylor), Macauley Bonne, Myles Judd, Michael Clark, Josh Koroma, Ryan McLean, Trialist (Michael Gash), Teddy Perkins.
Referee: Stephen Bates
Assistants: Graham Swanton & Spencer Brewer