A Closer Look: Southend

We take a look into the Southend camp ahead of tomorrow’s big clash at Roots Hall.

Sol Campbell takes charge of his first game since being named Southend United manager as Blues host Town tomorrow afternoon in League One.

Part of Campbell’s backroom staff is former blue Hermann Hreidarsson. The new first team coach made 137 starts and one sub appearance for the Blues, scoring three times, between August 2000 and March 2003.

Southend will be hoping Campbell’s appointment can spark an upturn in their fortunes in what is likely to be a raucous atmosphere in Essex with Ipswich expected to bring 2,500 fans down from Suffolk.

Southend go into tomorrow’s clash off the back of a humbling 7-1 defeat at the hands of Doncaster Rovers on Tuesday with Blues ending the game with nine men.

Tuesday’s defeat left Southend with just the one win and one draw from their last six league matches, with MK Dons the only side with a worse points tally from their last six games.

Southend will be without the suspended Ethan Hamilton and Stephen McLaughlin after both were shown straight red cards in Tuesday’s defeat to Doncaster Rovers. Harry Lennon’s yellow card against Doncaster puts on him five for the season and therefore will see him miss out too.

Both start three-game bans, leaving Blues light in midfield with the likes of Sam Mantom and Luke Hyam still out through injury meaning Sol Campbell will need to be creative with his selections.

Charlie Kelman and John White are the other certain absentees as both continue to recover from ankle and arm injuries respectively

To get a closer look at The Shrimpers TOTT has been speaking to Southend fan and season ticket holder Belinda Clay ahead of the match.

How do you describe your season so far?

Disappointing, but I along with all the other Southend Utd fans are hoping our season is kickstarted on Saturday against the Tractor Boys.

Who has been your stand out player so far this season?

Elvis Bwomono, he is relentless!! He never stops trying despite our often poor results, a real plus!

You’ve appointed Sol Campbell this week, what’s the remit for him this season?

The primary target has to be to make the team competitive and hard to beat! Hopefully that will bring back confidence and fitness levels that have been lost along the way. He will need to learn quickly which players deserve to wear the shirt.

On Tuesday, Doncaster won 7-1 at Roots Hall with two Southend players dismissed, will there be a reaction tomorrow?

I hope so! We will hopefully see which Players want a future at Southend Utd as time is running out for a few of them!

What team are you expecting Campbell to pick for his first game in charge?

Oxley, Elvis, Ralph, Kiernan, Shaugnessy, Milligan, Hutchinson, Dieng, Cox, Humprys, Hopper.

What are your thoughts ahead of tomorrow’s game with Town?

I am expecting a very tough game against a very good side. They will be looking for a reaction too after losing two on the spin.

If you could pick one Town player to play for Southend who are you going for?

Luke Chambers! This season we have lacked leadership and that’s something Luke brings to the Ipswich Team.

Score prediction?

1-1 Garbutt and Hopper!

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