“You’re on mute, love…

Southend United v Walsall – Sky Bet League Two – Roots Hall Stadium – Tuesday 7pm – Preview

Get’s home from Colchester – Scans highlight of Scunthorpe v Blues – Bang head repeatedly against the wall.

Damage report…

Scunthorpe United 1-1 Southend United 

Match: 36 Won: 7 Drawn: 10 Lost: 19 Points: 31 Position: 23rd Nils: 20 

The fans’ anger has reached new levels – can anyone inside Roots Hall actually hear them? More to the points, do they want to?

Well, whichever way you look at it, both Ron Martin and the Shrimpers Trust have issued statements that suggest they realise there is unrest.

Unfortunately, but rather predictably, the foot soldier’s reaction via social media confirms that they have had enough and have little faith in either entity. Personally, a simple ‘I’ve made mistakes’ from Mr Martin might have drawn a crumb of sympathy – but he didn’t and it hasn’t. 

The Trust’s statement means well, but an ever-growing volume of supporters believe it is a case of too little too late. To be honest, I really can’t see how either can rekindle any faith from the fans. As ever, I’m happy to be proved wrong, but I would imaging season card sales for the 2021/22 season – whatever division Southend find themselves in – will spell out a clear message that they want to see change.

In the meantime, the ‘Save Our Southend’ group – heavily backed on social media by more than 6,000 supporters – has reignited and plunged itself into a situation far less favourable than when it was initially founded more than a decade ago. These are strange, interesting, but above all, dark time at Roots Hall Stadium.

Anyway, back to that damage report – Game management – Abysmal!

“It feels exactly like a defeat,” boss, Mark Molesley bemoaned. It’s felt pretty awful for the best part of three years. As disappointing as this latest blow was, it is hardly a surprise any more.

“We fluffed our lines today. Unfortunately, it was a repeat of last Saturday against Stevenage and we’ve got to be big, strong and brave now,” Molesley added. While I’d agree Southend need to be brave and have needed to be for some time, I believe a team mirrors their manager. Why did Southend become so withdraw after taking the lead so late in the game, particularly facing ten-men? Another opportunity wasted. Yep, place it on the pile with all the others!

But in truth, before the penalty, Southend rarely threatened. Further signs of that lack of bravery, with more than a helping of little quality thrown in for good measure. Once again, the table doesn’t lie and hasn’t for some time.

In the meantime, some Blues supporters – perhaps in a panic – are beginning to run before they can walk, targeting a mid-April derby clash with Colchester as a potential avenue to safety. 

I’ve seen a lot of Colchester this season, including last Saturday’s defeat to Port Vale. In truth, if the pair went head-to-head right now, Southend, for me, has the edge. But the derby is a month away. Blues have six matches before they head to the JobServe. Looking at it purely from a Southend perspective, it could be all over by then, Indeed, if Grimsby were to get a spurt on, Essex could lose both of their EFL teams, which would be disastrous for the county as a whole – How has this been allowed to happen?

Walsall visits on Tuesday evening. Like Southend, a side struggling towards the wrong end of the table – the fanbase dissatisfied and disillusioned – Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?

As I said in a previous article (yep, that’s the one – when I found myself in conversation with a man, dead for more than a century) I have strong family ties with the Black Country side and take no pleasure in their struggles either.

But whether I’m in the press box at the London Stadium, JobServe, Brisbane Road or Roots Hall – as a fan, Southend United are my main concern. I noticed that Mr Martin conclude his statement with the words ‘we are after all on the same side’ – I suggest even skimming the surface of the outpouring of anger and emotion on social media demonstrates that this is no longer a view shared by the majority.

Jeevesie’s prediction: Southend United 0-0 Walsall 

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Brian Jeeves

Email: [email protected]