BOSS Michael Flynn blamed “poor defending and poor officiating” for his Newport County AFC side’s 2-1 defeat to Leyton Orient in east London.

Flynn, whose League Two leaders were playing in front of fans for the first time this season, also claimed some of the Exiles squad received “awful” abuse from Orient supporters.

County led at the Breyer Group Stadium thanks to Jamie Proctor’s first-half goal, before Danny Johnson and James Brophy struck after the break to turn the game on its head.

The visitors appeared to have levelled proceedings when substitute Tristan Abrahams converted from close range, but his effort was ruled out by referee Tom Nield for a foul by the striker.

Speaking after County’s third league loss of the campaign, Flynn admitted he was disappointed with his team’s defending, however, he felt the standard of officiating left a lot to be desired.

“It was an outstanding goal from Jamie, and we should have scored more in the first half,” he said.

“We knew if we got a second goal we would have won the game.

“It has come back to bite us on the backside again because we haven’t killed a team off and given them the impetus in the second half.”

He added: “We shot ourselves in the foot in the second half. The goals we gave away were really poor.

“Our distribution and choice of pass was poor, and there was some really, really poor officiating.

“I’m not going to beat myself up over it and the players know it wasn’t good enough.

“From the standards we’ve set, the goals we gave away were poor, but we should have easily had a point.”

And on that disallowed Abrahams strike, he said: “The goal that was disallowed, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it.

“We’ve watched it and the people on iFollow will see it and know I’m not just talking rubbish.

“It is a very, very, very poor decision from the officials.

“I’m not going to say too much about it. We lost the game because of poor defending and poor officiating.”

There was a crowd of 1,734 at the Breyer Group Stadium, making it the first time County have played in front of fans this term.

Asked if it gave Orient an advantage, Flynn said: “No, I don’t think so. They’ve all played in front of a crowd before.

“I can understand sometimes why they want to keep them away because some of the abuse the Leyton Orient fans were giving my players on the bench was awful, but hey-ho, we’re all big enough to handle it.”

There’s another away day for County on Tuesday when they go to Salford City, who drew 0-0 with second-placed Cheltenham Town on Saturday.

“We’re 17 games in now and looking forward to Tuesday,” said Flynn. “It’s going to be a tough game, we know that, and we’ll hopefully end the long week of travelling on a positive with three points.”