Southend sink Stags but Brown is cau­tious

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Tom Van Klav­eren

PHIL Brown ad­mits his play­ers could start feel­ing the pro­mo­tion pres­sure af­ter Southend held off a spir­ited Mans­field side at Roots Hall.

Two goals in seven min­utes mid­way through the first half proved enough for the Es­sex side against a Mans­field team that will now be look­ing over their shoul­der at the teams be­low them.

Barry Corr’s 14th goal of the sea­son - and his eighth in his last nine - gave the Shrimpers the lead be­fore mid­fielder Will Atkin­son com­pleted the scor­ing – leav­ing Southend with just one loss in seven games.

And with his side now sit­ting eight points off the top three – al­beit with a game in hand – manager Brown knows the im­por­tance of keep­ing their form go­ing

“I thought in the first half we were wor­thy of be­ing 2-0 up but we lacked that ruth­less­ness to com­pletely kill a team off,” he said.

“They threw cer­tain things at us in the lat­ter stages but when our goal­keeper doesn’t re­ally have to make a save it shows you how com­fort­able it was.

“Sup­port­ers need to un­der­stand that it is tight at the top of the ta­ble and there is a lot of pres­sure on the play­ers to get to where we want to get to.

“We are ten points bet­ter off than we were last year so if we con­cen­trate on win­ning our home games then there is a pos­si­bil­ity to get some­where near.”

The break­through came in the 21st minute when Michael Tim­lin stole the ball off Chris Cle­ments and played Corr in be­hind the Mans­field de­fence with the striker ap­ply­ing the fin­ish.

Southend dou­bled their ad­van­tage seven min­utes later when Ryan Leonard’s pow­er­ful halfvol­ley was par­ried by Lenny Pidge­ley, al­low­ing Atkin­son to sweep home his first of the sea­son.

The home side started the sec­ond half brighter but wasted an op­por­tu­nity when Corr headed over from John White’s pump for­ward.

Mans­field’s best chance of the game came in the 66th minute when Vadaine Oliver climbed high­est at a cor­ner but his header struck the bar. Mans­field pushed for­ward in the sec­ond half but failed to make the most of their chances with manager Adam Mur­ray ad­mit­ting they were beaten by the bet­ter team.

He said:“I think we did get a re­ac­tion from last week and I don’t think any­one who was here could com­plain that we didn’t per­form well.

“The in­gre­di­ents I asked for be­fore the game were there but we came up against a side that were a lit­tle bit bet­ter than us in cer­tain ar­eas.

“There has been a ridicu­lous amount of change at the foot­ball club and it all adds up.”

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