Southend United vs Burton Albion...
Southend United will hope to use the frustration of Good Friday’s draw against Walsall to push them on to a much needed three points on Easter Monday as Kevin Bond's side host Burton Albion at Roots Hall (1pm Kick-Off).
Blues side were mere seconds away from a vital victory at the Banks’s Stadium before Walsall won and converted a contentious penalty in the fourth minute of stoppage time, while they were also aggreived about having a second goal wrongly chalked off in the dying stages of the first half as the referee blew for half time.
With games running out, Blues know that this afternoon’s clash with the Brewers is almost must-win but they’ll face a tough task against an in-form Burton side who have won four of their last six.
Nigel Clough’s side are still mathematically – albeit unlikely – in with a shot of making the play-offs and they’ll be looking to make up for a disappointing defeat to Portsmouth on Good Friday.
Southend United: DLDLLL
Burton Albion: LWDWWW
2nd October 2018: Burton Albion (Boyce) 1 vs 2 (Hopper, Cox) Southend United
22nd February 2016: Southend United (Wordsworth, Barnett, Mooney) 3 vs 1 (Beavon) Burton Albion
3rd October 2015: Burton Albion (Prosser OG) 1 vs 0 Southend United
Stephen Humphrys has been described as having a “slim chance” of returning against Burton Albion after the Blues striker wasn't risked against Walsall with a hamstring problem.
Kevin Bond will hope Simon Cox and Harry Bunn will have recovered sufficiently from Friday, but Bond does have the option of playing Charlie Kelman or Emile Acquah up front.
Sam Hart was taken off in the second-half against the Saddlers and will need to be assessed, while Luke Hyam’s early return from a hamstring problem will give Blues a boost in midfield.
Burton have a number of injury concerns after Scott Fraser, Stephen Quinn and Marcus Harness were all forced off in their Good Friday defeat against Portsmouth.
A certain absentee though for the Brewers will be Brad Collins who has a groin issue, whilst Jake Buxton is also facing a race to be fit having missed Friday’s game through injury.
Kevin Bond, Southend United Manager:
“I’ve got nothing but praise for the lads really because I thought they put in a terrific performance [at Walsall]. The only thing I think we may be guilty of is we had a couple of chances to wrap the game up, but I don’t think that excuses the referee for making the mistakes that he’s made.
“I couldn’t complain about the attitude and the applications of the players, I thought they were first class. We’ve got to do the same again [against Burton], the same sort of performance on Monday; three games to go we’ve got to keep fighting.”
Nigel Clough, Burton Albion Manager:
“They will be fighting and scrapping for their lives. Every team we are up against at the moment has something to play for which is good as they get a bit nervy and edgy at times.
“Southend will have three games which will all be cup finals and it will be a warm day down there with only a couple of days in between to rest.
“I hope our lads want to take the injustice of the result against Portsmouth out on Southend. We have been playing well all season and no team in the league will be too keen on playing us at the moment.”
Portsmouth vs Coventry City (12.30 KO)
Blackpool vs Fleetwood Town
Bradford City vs Gillingham
Bristol Rovers vs Rochdale
Charlton Athletic vs Scunthorpe United
Peterborough vs Sunderland
Plymouth Argyle vs Barnsley
Shrewsbury Town vs Oxford United
Wycombe Wanderers vs Walsall
Doncaster Rovers vs Accrington Stanley (Tuesday 7.45pm)
Luton Town vs AFC Wimbledon (Tuesday 7.45pm)