Battling Blues youngsters restore some pride

Brian Jeeves

Southend United 2-1 Lincoln City

SOL CAMPBELL praised his youthful Southend United side after they topped a battling display with a last-gasp drama to sink Lincoln City at Roots Hall Stadium.

Highly-rated Charlie Kelman handed the Blues the lead midway through the second period. However, Harry Anderson struck late for the Imps, seemingly handing the visitors a share of the spoils.

But Southend were not to be denied their third Sky bet League One victory of the season. Elvis Bwomono heading home six minutes into stoppage-time, sending the home support home a little happier following another testing week for the club.

“When you start off the day and you’ve got several under 23 academy guys – some playing, the majority on the bench – it’s an interesting start of the day,” Campbell tol

“You’re hoping that everybody gets together and they give a good account of themselves, and they did.

“They played really good football, they stuck to the plan, they played some good combinations and we were a threat. It’s a fantastic result for us because of the situation this week and where we are now.”

With several players departing during the transfer window, Campbell’s options were limited: “That’s all I’ve got and I had to make the best of it,” the former England defender explained.

“It was good to see they were a little bit nervous in the beginning but then they grew into the game and got better and better. That was pleasing to see that they showed a little bit of character, especially second-half as well. They listened to me and took the lead from the experienced players on the pitch and it was really nice to see that.

“They’re learning on the job. That’s the situation that we’re in. I said to them on Friday, some of the older players will be saying what’s going on, no one’s coming in, but I said to the younger players that this is the opportunity for you to take and that’s what it’s all about – seizing the opportunity and going for it.”

Southend United return to Sky Bet League One action on Saturday, February 8 when they take on Blackpool at Bloomfield Road (3pm).

Southend United: Oxley, Bwomono, Milligan, McLaughlin, Kelman, Demetriou, Barratt, Clifford, Hutchinson (Coker 90+2’), Phillips (Mitchell-Nelson 80’), White (Capt) (Goodship 57’) Subs not used: Taylor, Egbri, Rush, Kinali

Lincoln City: Vickers, Shackell (Capt), Bolger, John-Jules, Hopper (Hesketh 72’), Grant, Morrell, Eardley, Melbourne, Elbouzedi (Anderson 46’), Edun (Payne 86’) Subs not used: Andrew, Eyoma, Chapman, Coventry

Referee: Charles Breakspear
Assistants: Stephen Brown and Daniel Cook
Fourth Official: Carl Fitch-Jackson

Attendance: 6,605 (666 from Lincoln)


Brian Jeeves