The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Chris Bai­ley

SOUTHEND UNITED man­ager Phil Brown ad­mits the club were shocked when de­fender Ryan Inniss was handed a jail sen­tence.

Inniss, who signed on loan from Crys­tal Palace on trans­fer dead­line day, was given a 14-week jail sen­tence af­ter ad­mit­ting as­sault af­ter break­ing a bot­tle over a man’s head in a night­club.

That meant the 21-yearold was in HMP Bel­marsh when his new club trav­elled to Scun­thorpe last Satur­day.

A judge has now sus­pended the sen­tence for 18 months and Inniss is out on ap­peal, though he has been or­dered to com­plete 240 hours of com­mu­nity ser­vice and banned from en­ter­ing li­censed premises – ex­cept for work or buy­ing food – for a year.

He must also com­plete al­co­hol treat­ment and pay £300 to his vic­tim.

Brown says ev­ery­one at Southend is strug­gling to come to terms with it all.

“When we signed the player, we knew noth­ing about the ins and outs of the in­ci­dent but we did know there was a court case,” Brown said.

“It was just a shock to our sys­tem when he got a jail sen­tence.

“We have to deal with that, peo­ple’s opin­ions and the fall-out, but we are deal­ing with it and we’re hop­ing to get a pos­i­tive out­come to it all.”

AP­PEAL: Ryan Inniss

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