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Gary Bowyer talking to the media after Salford City 1-1 Leyton OrientSalford City opened their 2021-22 Sky Bet League Two campaign with a 1-1 draw against Leyton Orient.

The visitors took the lead in a rather even first half when Omar Beckles lashed home from close range after Tom King saved Darren Pratley’s effort.

However The Ammies responded and levelled things up when Matty Willock’s sensational strike from outside of the area left Lawrence Vigouroux with no chance.

The Chilean goalkeeper impressed in the second half with some good saves, and Brandon Thomas-Asante had a goal ruled out for offside, however Salford couldn’t find a winner and settled for an opening day point.

It’s the fifth draw in eight seasons for The Ammies on the opening day, but Gary Bowyer was encouraged by aspects of his side’s performance.

“I think it was a real good entertaining game if I’m being brutally honest, we started okay first half.

“We’re disappointed with the goal we conceded but I thought our reaction was terrific, we nearly got an equaliser straight away from the kick-off.

“Then we finished the half strongly and witnessed probably the goal of the season on day one, it was an unbelievable strike from Matty!”

After the break Salford came out the stronger, Josh Morris particularly influential in creating chances which came for Conor McAleny, Ian Henderson and Matthew Lund who headed agonisingly wide.

The Manager added:

“At half time we asked them to up it a little bit more, and they did it was like shots on in the second half with the amount of shots that we had.

“The goalie to be fair to him made some saves but I was pleased with other aspects of the game.

“There’s lots of us to work on which is good as well, so I’m disappointed we didn’t win, of course, but pleased with how we performed and it gives us a lot to go off going forward.”

Tuesday night sees Salford head to Derby County in the Carabao Cup before Sutton United visit The Peninsula Stadium next Saturday.

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