CORR POUNCES FOR SHRIMPERS
FLEETWOOD Town boss Graham Alexander refused to bemoan an opportunity lost as they kept their automatic promotion hopes – albeit fading – alive with a draw against Southend.
Shrimpers’ striker Barry Corr cancelled out Steven Schumacher’s opener for the hosts to secure their place in the end of the season play-offs.
Fleetwood are guaranteed to at the very least join them but boss Alexander still hopes to be able to secure a top-three finish.
“It’s a huge game for us next week at Chesterfield and depending on how their game against Burton goes on Sunday it’s going to be very important,” said Alexander.
“I would obviously have loved for us to go in to that game on the back of three points and if we had been able to keep it at 1-0 at halftime we would’ve done that.
“Saying that, we bossed the second half and I couldn’t have asked for anymore from the lads.
“We were just lacking that cutting edge in the final third but full credit to Southend’s goalkeeper because he had a very good day.
“All you can ask is that the players get their efforts on target but we couldn’t find a way past him and he was their man of the match which tells the story.”
Fleetwood, who remain fourth in the table two points behind third placed Chesterfield, went in front in the 37th minute with Schumacher on target.
The midfielder’s left wing freekick evaded a whole host of bodies in the penalty area before nestling in the right-hand side of the goal.
However, Southend were back level just three minutes later when Corr bagged his fourth goal in five games, heading home a rightwing corner from Ben Coker.
At the start of the second half, Southend goalkeeper Daniel Bentley, who is rumoured to be attracting interest from Championship club Leeds, made a string of fine saves.
The 20-year-old denied Antoni Sarcevic, David Ball, Schumacher and Matty Blair to keep the score level.
But, having survived those scares, the Shrimpers were left fuming when referee Chris Sarginson failed to award a penalty after Coker went to ground while under pressure from Liam Hogan.
And Southend’s assistant man- ager Dave Penney did not agree with the decision.
“Ben was through on goal so if he’s not been fouled why would he go down?,” said Penney.
“The referee was ten yards away but was looking back at the fourth official for advice even though he was much further from it, so it seemed strange.
“We obviously thought it was a penalty and I would imagine Fleetwood probably didn’t but we’ve got a point and we’re pleased to have scored from a set piece because we don’t do that enough.
“It keeps the momentum going for us but there’s still another league game to go before we
can think of the play-offs.”