FC Halifax Town v Leyton Orient preview

Nathan Clarke is a former Leyton Orient captain
Nathan Clarke is a former Leyton Orient captain

FC Halifax Town could return to the top of the National League table if they beat undefeated Leyton Orient at The Shay on Saturday (3pm).

Orient are one of only two sides yet to lose in the division and have not conceded a goal in four-and-a-half hours of football.

Manager Justin Edinburgh did a good job in steadying the ship at Orient after being appointed in November 2017, losing only eight of his 29 games in charge.

Striker Macauley Bonne netted 22 goals in 44 games last season, and has four so far this term.

Orient have scored five goals in the last five minutes of games already this campaign, and their impressive early season form includes away draws at Salford and Gateshead, and an away win at Chesterfield.

Orient have fielded the same starting 11 for the last five matches. They will be without midfielder Dale Gorman, who is on international duty with Northern Ireland under-21’s, but will welcome back striker James Alabi after his three-game suspension.

Halifax were without injury-victims Ben Tomlinson, Michael Duckworth, Ryan Sellers and Josh Staunton for their midweek draw at Wrexham, although Niall Maher did make his return from injury in that game.

The Shaymen have a 100 per cent home record and have only conceded once in their four home games this season.

Goals from Bonne and Josh Koroma earned Orient a 2-1 win at The Shay last season in Billy Heath’s final game in charge of Halifax, who last beat Leyton Orient at home in April 1988.

Saturday’s National League fixtures:

Aldershot Town v Bromley

Barnet v Maidenhead United

Barrow v Dagenham & Redbridge

Braintree Town v Wrexham

Chesterfield v Dover Athletic

Eastleigh v AFC Fylde

FC Halifax Town v Leyton Orient

Harrogate Town v Havant & Waterlooville

Salford City v Maidstone United

Solihull Moors v Hartlepool United

Ebbsfleet United v Gateshead