Marcus Braddock previews the visit of Southendf
Table Topping Shrewsbury Town face another tough test this Tuesday night when Southend United visit The Montgomery Waters Meadow.
The Shrimpers started the season really well with a 2-1 home win against League One new-boys Blackburn Rovers. Since then however, they've not really kicked on and have yet to record their second win of the season yet. Having said that, they did manage three away goals against Gillingham recently, which is more than we scored there although we won and they came away with just a point for their troubles. They also drew 0-0 at home with Rochdale, a team we beat 3-2 at home a few weeks ago, again we picked up more points but Southend did manage a clean sheet against a team that scored twice against us (albeit with dubious penalties). Their away form seems patchy, beaten 5-0 by Rotherham in their first away game of the season they then drew 3-3 with Gillingham and lost their third away game in the league this season on Saturday when Charlton beat them 2-1. So two defeats, one draw, ten goals conceded and four in reply, not brilliant but there are signs in there that they may well claim some points this season from away games. But against our home record of three wins, 2 clean sheets and five goals scored and their job looks more difficult.
Phil Brown has an interesting managerial CV, the five teams he's managed all have different suffixes. In reverse order he's managed Wanderers (Bolton, caretaker 1999), County (Derby 2005/6), City (Hull 2006-2010), North End (Preston 2011) and now he's at United (since 2013). What is also interesting is that it's at his current club that he has found the most wins per games as a permanent manager. Another interesting Phil Brown fact is that has won Premier League and League Two manager of the month awards.
Ryan Leonard 2
Michael Kightly 2
Michael Timlin 2
Yellow cards 11. Red cards 0.
Ross Joyce from Cleveland. Games this season: 7. Average Yellow cards: 6.1.
Assistants: Matthew Jones and Matthew Parry
Fourth Official: Anthony Tankard
Shrimpers - Midfielder Michael Kightly is a doubt (Hamstring), Nile Ranger is unavailable. The Shrimpers will do without centre-backs Rob Kiernan (knee) and Michael Turner (hamstring).
Town - Carlton Morris could return.
On paper this looks an easy game for the league leaders but lets not forget that they have a capable manager who has seen pretty much everything the game has to show. They finished agonizingly close to a play-off place, just 1 point extra would have done the job because they had a far superior goal difference to Millwall who piped them. If you look at Southend's start to the season you see a similar pattern to now, just a few points and one win in their first six games but they came pretty good in the end. Maybe this is the best time to play them although they've been pretty close to three points in their last few league games, drawing three of them and narrowly losing to a good Charlton on Saturday.
This is a potential banana skin given our relative positions and we need to give every bit of the energy and industry of Saturday to take anything from the game. If we do, things could come together nicely with some of the teams directly behind us playing each other.
Shrewsbury Town 2-2 Southend United