Colchester United vs Southend United...
Southend take a short break from League One action as they continue with their Checkatrade Trophy campaign with a trip to local rivals Colchester United this evening.
Following a winning start to the competition against Cambridge United in Southern Group B, Blues know that a win against Col U will all but cement their place in the next round.
Colchester, on the other hand, know they almost have to win to have any chance of advancing after losing their opening tie 2-0 to Southampton u21s at the JobServe Community Stadium last month.
And for John McGreal’s side to stay in the hunt they need to secure a first win over Southend for eight years, having not beaten Blues since a 2-0 win back in February 2010.
Colchester United: LWLDWD
Southend United: DWWWLL
7th November 2017: Southend United (Wright, Robinson) 2 vs 0 Colchester United
6th February 2016: Southend United (Wordsworth, Barrett, McQueen) 3 vs 0 Colchester United
26th December 2015: Colchester United 0 vs 2 (White, Mooney) Southend United
Cypriot pair Jason Demetriou and Harry Kyprianou are both unavailable for the trip to Colchester after receiving call-ups to the Cyprus senior side and u21 side respectively.
John White limped off with a hamstring problem against Oxford on Saturday, so he’ll miss out, meaning Blues have a shortage of centre-back options.
Fellow centre-back Harry Lennon is closing in on a return, but Tuesday will come too soon for the former Charlton defender, while striker Tom Hopper is unlikely to be risked.
Defender Frankie Kent returned to the Colchester United bench on Saturday against Stevenage after recovering from a hamstring injury, so he’ll be looking to make a start this evening.
Tom Lapslie made a successful return from knee surgery at the weekend so maybe rested while captain Luke Prosser and striker Frank Nouble are set to face their former club.
Chris Powell, Southend United Manager:
“Most sides in the Checkatrade see this as an opportunity to play some other players that need game time because the league is most important, until they get further on.
"But I’m thinking, it’s an Essex Derby and at the end of it [the competition] there’s Wembley. That’s so powerful. If you need one thing to focus on in these games, at the end of it you could be walking out under the arch at Wembley.
“That would be great for a club like ours to progress in the competition and see how far we can get.”
Tickets are now off sale directly from the Blues Box Office but will be available on the night either by cash or card from the ticket windows (next to the club shop), not from the turnstiles. For prices click here.
A reminder that the game is also live on iFollow tonight. Match passes are available to purchase now.