Striker nets 20th goal of the season as Orient snatch a point at Stevenage

Stevenage FC manager Teddy Sheringham on the sidelines

Stevenage FC manager Teddy Sheringham on the sidelines - Credit: Archant

The number at the end of the year may have changed but how Stevenage end their matches certainly hasn’t as they conceded another late goal in a 2-2 draw at home to Leyton Orient.

Jay Simpson’s equaliser three minutes into injury time was the 18th goal Boro have conceded in the last 15 minutes of matches this season – and it cost them a valuable two points as they failed to win for the fourth consecutive game.

And yet Stevenage had looked pretty solid for the most part. They conceded a harsh penalty to go one down when Fraser Franks was adjudged to have handled the ball in his area from a shot quite close to him, allowing Simpson to put the visitors ahead from the spot in the second half.

Teddy Sheringham then made two changes in bringing on Ben Kennedy and Armand Gnanduillet, and the latter glanced Tom Pett’s cross past Alex Cisak with a header before the two substitutes combined wonderfully with Kennedy’s subtle through ball finished off by his team-mate to put Boro in the driving seat.

But then in injury time, just moments after Boro had seen off one attack, Simpson showed the kind of finish that has propelled him to 20 goals so far this campaign when he struck from the edge of the box to hand the visitors a share of the points.

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There was no place for defender Mark Hughes in the Boro starting XI this week after he was substituted after just 30 minutes in the defeat to Dagenham last time out.

With Lee Cox injured in came Rohdell Gordon for his first start since August, on the right of midfield, while Spurs loanee Connor Ogilvie slotted in at left-back.

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The latter was in good form again, and so too was Jamie McCombe inside him while the defence was also protected much better this week than during the defeat to the Daggers.

Blair Turgott showed flashes of inspiration for the visitors, especially in the first half, while Simpson also looked a class act, but neither side did enough in the first half to break the deadlock.

The closest anyone came to scoring in the first period was when Ronnie Henry was forced to head off his own line from Simpson, but most of the action took part in the second – and it was Orient, and Simpson, who had the last laugh.

Next up for Stevenage is a trip to Mansfield Town next Saturday.

Stevenage: Day, Ogilvie, Henry, Franks, McCombe, McFadzean (Gnanduillet 65), Gordon (Kennedy 61), Lee, Tonge, Pett, Matt. Subs: Crowe, Hughes, Johnson, Conlon, Gorman.

Orient: Cisak, Clohessy, Kpekawa, Shaw, Essam, McAnuff (Marquis 81), Turgott (Jahraldo 77), Payne, Pritchard, Palmer, Simpson. Subs: Grainger, Dunne, Kashket, Moncur, Pollock.

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