Rovers travel to the capital this weekend as they take on Sky Bet League Two leaders Leyton Orient at Brisbane Road.
The fixture marks Danny Schofield’s side’s first away trip of 2023 and they will be looking to make it three consecutive league victories following wins over Rochdale and Carlisle United.
The last meeting
Rovers came from behind when the two sides met at the Eco-Power Stadium back in October to ensure the points were shared upon former manager Richie Wellens’ return to South Yorkshire.
An acrobatic effort from Orient’s top goal-scorer Paul Smyth midway through the first-half saw the visitors take the lead before Harrison Biggins headed home his first goal of the season to draw Rovers level in the second-half.
Leyton Orient’s recent form
Since the last meeting, this weekend’s hosts have gone on to win seven of their last 12 league matches, drawing three and losing two within that period.
At the back end of November, they came from behind at Edgeley Park to beat Stockport County 2-1 thanks to goals from Darren Pratley and Omar Beckles before taking a comfortable 3-0 win against Bradford City through goals from Charlie Kelman, Tom James and a late strike from Ruel Sotiriou.
The O’s last win came at home against Sutton United with a 2-0 success after Smyth struck his ninth goal of the season before an own-goal sealed the three points.
Over the Christmas period, Orient played out two 0-0 draws with Stevenage and Newport County respectively and most recently suffering a 1-0 loss at the hands third-placed Northampton Town in their first game of 2023.
Goalkeeper Lawrence Vigouroux has played a vital role in The O’s success so far this season, playing all 24 Sky Bet League Two games and keeping 15 clean sheets in the process.
The Chilean came through the youth ranks at Brentford before moving on to Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool before making his professional debut on loan at Swindon Town. He made the permanent switch to the Robins in 2016 and made 119 appearances while also turning out 19 times on loan at Waterford.
Vigouroux returned to Chile in 2019 with Everton de Vina del Mar but returned to England a year later without any minutes and signed for Leyton Orient. He has since made 118 appearances for the Londoners and has currently conceded the least amount of goals of anyone between the sticks in the division having only been beaten on 13 occasions.
Talisman Paul Smyth has also featured heavily in the league leaders’ first half of the season, finding the back of the net on nine occasions to find himself sat in a joint-sixth place amongst the league’s top-scorers.
The Northern Ireland international joined The O’s in the summer of 2021, to bring to an end a four-year spell on the other side of London at Queens Park Rangers.
The forward started his career at Linfield before joining QPR but only played 19 times for Rangers having spent the majority of his time out on loan. Between 2019 and 2021, Smyth enjoyed two spells at Accrington Stanley before turning out for Wycombe Wanderers and Charlton Athletic. In that time he made 69 appearances, netting eight times.
Since joining Orient, he has featured 45 times and scored 12 goals.
Midfielder George Moncur is also enjoying his most successful season since 2019 having registered six goal contributions (four goals and two assists) in 22 Sky Bet League Two games.
The 29-year-old started his youth journey at Tottenham Hotspur before completing it at West Ham United. He didn’t feature for the Hammers’ first team and spent plenty of time out on loan before joining Colchester United permanently in 2014. He spent two years in Essex and enjoyed the most prolific spell of his career returning 20 goals in 87 games before leaving for Barnsley.
Moncur would go on to leave South Yorkshire for Luton Town in January 2019 where he won the Sky Bet League One title within six months but he would also register a runners up honour in the very same season as Barnsley finished second to also win promotion to the Championship.
He then left for Hull City in 2021 before moving on to Leyton Orient at the start of the 2022/23 season to play a crucial role for the Brisbane Road outfit.