After going a week without scoring in three games (but two disallowed goals) the return of Rene from suspension is very welcome as we look to get back into the play offs and continue our superior home form.
Southend, like last year, are a team that will be there or thereabouts by the end of the season although have been inconsistent nestling just behind us on 23 points. On the road in recent weeks they have beaten Bristol Rovers (2-3) and Rotherham (0-3) but in between lost to Morecambe (1-0) so hopefully it is their turn to lose again! ;D
They have a twin threat of Gavin Tomlin and Britt Assombalonga up front which will keep Downes and Saah on their toes and will be a key battle in this match! We know about Tomlin who featured in the run in to our near promotion miss a couple of years ago and is a striker I rate. However, his partner, Britt is their top scorer with 9 goals from 18 starts and is Dave Thomas' player to watch! Born in Zaire and and on loan from Watford, his loan period has been extended until January - maybe we can get him then! ;D
Despite having Rene back I think Ling is still battling with a few injury issues. Poke is touch and go but with a clean sheet behind him at the Kassam then Ricey will be looking forward to continuing if possible. I think at home, Ling would prefer Craig to be in the middle but if Danny is still out then I think he will stay there as Thompson is being used later on where his pace is more effective.
Some good match reports please as this will be rare home game that I will be missing.
Looking at the table I think a win is very important today as there are a number of teams who could go above us should we lose. We are due a good home win and while we have not been scoring goals of late, we have been playing reasonably well and with some better finishing, could have won a few more games than we have.
Has the away end been closed just to say money? It does make sense not to have to pay for stewards if there are not going to be many away fans using that stand. The away fans that do go to the game will at least be able to enjoy a better view of the match in more comfortable surroundings.
It won’t please all away fans as many still like to be in a proper away stand behind one of the goals. I know there was not many at the JPT game, but when I talked to a number of Yeovil fans in Yeovil after the match, they said it did not feel like a proper football environment, not having any fans behind either goal.
One thing for sure if Martin Rice is in goal today, he won’t have to guard a goal with away fans behind it, sometimes at some matches that can be a bit intimidating for any goal keeper.
I know some fans on the popside feel they should be allowed to use the away end, if that happened then its back to having to pay to have stewards on it, plus the fact it might well half empty the pospside.
It’s a dry day so far in the Bay and the sun did pop up for a while, but has gone back in again, lets hope it comes back out and shines on our team this afternoon. Being close to Christmas the gate might be a bit lower than we might like.
I hope all those going today enjoy the match and we get the result we are looking for. As always if possible share your thoughts and views on the match with us here on the TFF.
I was shocked when I checked the half time scores to learn we were three nil down. The forth one went in just after the start of the second half and I knew that was it then, a bit of a thumping at home.
I did managed to hear the last ten minutes on the radio and we were certainly having a good go at Southend, but down to ten men and a mountain to climb, we were never going to get anything out of this game.
The co commentator was asked what positives could be taken out of the match, he replied, Jarvis coming on and scoring, Howe keeping going right to the end and the popside for staying to the end. It did sound as if a large number were heading for the exits long before the final whistle.
Always a sad sound hearing the fans booing the players at the final whistle and they came over loud and clear over the radio. This result drops us down to 12th place in the table and we do need to bounce back in our next game, to stop any further slide down the table.
Maybe this is the wake up call? Time to bring in a loan player or two, not to worried about us at the back, but the lack of goals is causing some concerns.