Nathan Elder scored the only goal of the game as Fleet overcame a strong side put out by League One Leyton Orient to celebrate ‘Liam Daish Day’ in style.
But the home side were made to work hard and had goalkeeper Preston Edwards to thank for a string of fine saves.
In the starting line-up, new signing Patrick Ada started in defence while trialists Ben Greenhalgh, Kirk Hudson and Phil Walsh got another chance to impress. There was no inclusion for Ashley Winn or Serge Makofo who had both played in the previous friendlies.
The visitors had the first decent chance when former Ipswich and Colchester striker Kevin Lisbie got to Dean Cox’s cross but his header couldn’t beat Edwards. New O’s signing Anthony Griffith then threaded a pass through for Lisbie who should really have scored but planted his effort wide.
At the other end, Moses Ashikodi – seeking to find the net for the third successive game – outfoxed his markers to get clear but goalkeeper Jamie Jones denied him. The O’s were putting in a good shift in midfield, spraying the ball wide and forcing the Fleet to do most of the running and Lisbie was a livewire up front. He set up Cox for another chance and then combined well with Jimmy Smith whose goalbound effort was cleared off the line by Ada. It was the same story at the other end as Elder’s header was scrambled clear of the Orient goal.
Fleet got to half-time unscathed and with the visitors making seven changes at half-time, gained more of a foothold in the second half. Having made their own set of changes – Paul Lorraine, Ryan Blake and Lanre Azeez introduced, Fleet then took the lead on the hour mark when a long ball pumped forward from defence wasn’t dealt with by the league side and Elder snapped up the chance to put his side ahead.
Elder had a further chance before Tom Phipp saw his effort blocked by Moses Odubajo after an impressive period of play for the men in red. But the O’s could have got back into it when a high ball forward was missed by Lorraine and Afolabi Obefemi wriggled it free but fired over the bar.
Edwards was called upon to deny Joe Turner and Sean Crace in the final few minutes as the Fleet held on to record a slender win.