I’LL SCORE A PAIR AT WEM­B­LEY

Tom­lin says he won’t be sat­is­fied with one

The Football League Paper - - INSIDE - By Jamie Holt

FOR most a goal at Wem­b­ley is all that dreams are made of but Southend’s lead­ing scorer Gavin Tom­lin ad­mits he won’t be sat­is­fied un­less he bags a dou­ble against Crewe.

Tom­lin has toiled in Non-League and had his share of dis­ap­point­ments, in­clud­ing the early ter­mi­na­tion of his con­tract at Brent­ford in 2007, but af­ter fir­ing 16 goals for the Shrimpers this sea­son he’s in the form of his life.

Trou­ble­some back and thigh in­juries have plagued the 29-year-old though and had threat­ened his chance of play­ing in Southend’s first ever trip to the na­tional sta­dium.

De­but

But a goal in Good Fri­day’s 2-2 draw with Brad­ford, Tom­lin’s first start since Jan­uary, looks to have earned him a start­ing place in what will be his de­but at the na­tional sta­dium.

“A goal will be great, but I think I’m go­ing to score a cou­ple ac­tu­ally so I can’t wait,” said Tom­lin.

“I’ve never been to Wem­b­ley. It’s just an­other game for me but one I’m des­per­ately want­ing to win.

“It’s a fan­tas­tic op­por­tu­nity to go to Wem­b­ley and win a medal – many pro­fes­sion­als don’t get an op­por­tu­nity to even go to Wem­b­ley, never mind win a medal, so that’s what I’m hop­ing to achieve. I’ve had an on-go­ing in­jury through­out the sea­son with my back, and re­cently my thigh.

“Hopefully my re­turn can help give the lads a lit­tle bit of a boost on the pitch. I’ve got a hunger in me be­cause I want to be back play­ing reg­u­larly and play­ing well.”

Ben Reeves, whose late goal saw off Ley­ton Ori­ent in the south­ern area fi­nal, is hop­ing to shake off a quad prob­lem and could re­place Bilel Mohsni in the mid­field.

Other than that Phil Brown is likely to stick with the same side that drew with Fleet­wood last time out, mean­ing Tom­lin keeps his place up front. And the former Yeovil and Da­gen­ham & Red­bridge striker in­tends to give those trav­el­ling from Es­sex some­thing to savour.

“It’s un­be­liev­able to have sold 30,000 tick­ets. I never re­alised the club had such a big fol­low­ing and such sup­port,” added Tom­lin.

“It will be a great day out for all the club’s sup­port­ers and hopefully we’ll win, es­pe­cially with a few of my friends and fam­ily head­ing down.

“Noth­ing changes just be­cause it’s a cup fi­nal though. We have pre­pared in the same way as we would in the league and are hop­ing for the right re­sult.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

CREWE v SOUTHEND CREWE’S play­ers will have an ex­tra mo­ti­va­tion for glory to­day – with

their thoughts with ab­sent de­fender Adam Dug­dale.

The Alex squad were rocked this week when were they

told of the tragic death of Dug­dale’s new-born Jude son.

Dug­dale was born on March 25 but it was an­nounced on Fri­day had that he

passed away. A state­ment said: “The death sad

of the brave lit­tle lad has cer­tainly put ev­ery­thing into per­spec­tive. The thoughts of ev­ery­one club at the

are with Adam, his part-ne r Ni­cola and all the fam­ily.” Fans will give a minute’s ap­plause in the stands sixth in the

minute, com­mem­o­rat­ing Adam’s No.6 shirt. TWIN POWER: Gavin Tom­lin reck­ons he is in for a pair against Crewe at Wem­b­ley

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