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09 March 2021 Venue Roots Hall Attendance

Kick off 19:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

BIG PREVIEW: SOUTHEND VS TRANMERE

9 March 2021

Southend United vs Tranmere Rovers...

Overview

Southend United return to Roots Hall this evening for the first of two huge back-to-back home games, starting with the visit of high-flying Tranmere Rovers.

Blues dropped back into the relegation zone after a frustrating draw with Oldham on Saturday and they’ll be looking at these successive home games as a chance to jump back out of danger.  

Rovers will be travelling from the Wirral looking to keep tabs with the top three as Keith Hill’s side go into tonight just three points off the automatic promotion places.

Form

Saturday’s stalemate with Oldham was Southend’s third draw in their last six matches, having also drawn against Cambridge and Salford, with each of those three games ending 0-0.

Blues’ only win in that time came away at Forest Green Rovers, while Southend’s two defeats in the last six have come by the odd goal in 1-0 defeats to Bolton and Cheltenham.

Tranmere’s 1-0 home defeat to Crawley on Saturday ended a four-game unbeaten run for Rovers which had included wins against Carlisle, Leyton Orient and Newport.

Last Meeting

Saturday 24th October 2020

Tranmere Rovers 2-0 Southend United

Clarke 31’, Vaughan 52’

The experienced duo of Peter Clarke and James Vaughan combined to inflict a 2-0 defeat on Southend United the last time these two sides met back in October at Prenton Park.

Clarke nodded in the opener, killing the momentum Blues had built to that point, before Vaughan doubled the home side’s advantage shortly after the restart with a deflected effort.   

From The Boss

"Keith Hill has done a fantastic job at Tranmere since coming in. They're a vastly improved side with a whole host of experience in their squad.

"They've got a big game on Sunday at Wembley and I think most of the players will be wanting to show the manager that they deserve to play in that game.

"But on the other hand, I think promotion will be their real focus, and the league will take priority over the cup final.

"We can only control the way we approach the game we can't do anything about their squad, so we will have to see what the night brings and take serious action in delivering what we need to do."

Blues Team News

Simeon Akinola is a huge doubt for Blues this evening after the striker limped off with a back problem against Oldham. Mark Molesley has said a late call will be made on the frontman.

Alan McCormack missed the trip to Boundary Park with an ankle problem picked up in training and is described as having an ‘outside chance’ of being available for selection tonight.

Arsenal loanee James Olayinka though is certain to miss out again, having not featured since January for Blues, with the winger due to have another injection to help with his groin injury.

Tranmere Dangerman

In the absence of top scorer James Vaughan, Rovers will be looking to fellow striker Kaiyne Woolery to continue his recent scoring form, making him the dangerman this evening.

Woolery has scored in seven of his last 11 matches for Tranmere, including scoring the vital opening goal in a 2-0 win against Oxford which sent Rovers to the Papa Johns Trophy Final.

The 26-year-old describes himself as an ‘explosive player’ with his pace and direct running a nuisance for defenders across the division, so he’ll be requiring close attention this evening.

Ref Watch

Tim Robinson will be the man in charge tonight, being assisted by Nigel Lugg and Robert Hyde, with George Byrne the fourth official.

Robinson last visited Roots Hall in September 2017, overseeing a 0-0 draw against Rochdale, and his last Blues game anywhere was a 1-0 win at Oxford United on Boxing Day 2018.

The West Sussex official has taken charge of 29 games so far this season, showing a total of 87 yellow cards and five reds. His last outing was the 0-0 draw between Huddersfield and Cardiff.

iFollow Blues

With fans not able to attend Roots Hall in person, Blues supporters can watch tonight’s game with Tranmere by picking up a Match Pass on iFollow Blues for £10.

A Match Pass will allow you to watch the game on your laptop, computer, tablet or mobile device with Season Ticket holders already having access to their pass via their iFollow account.

For more information on how you can get your Match Pass and ensure you miss none of the action at Roots Hall on iFollow Blues, click here.

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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: SOUTHEND 0-2 TRANMERE

9 March 2021

Southend United’s survival hopes were dealt a blow as they lost 2-0 to Tranmere Rovers at Roots Hall with first-half goals from Paul Lewis and George Ray the difference between the two sides.

Lewis put the visitors in front after just eight minutes when he converted a low ball into the box from Kaiyne Woolery, seeing his first-time effort clip the underside of the crossbar on its way through to the opening goal of the evening.

The Rovers midfielder had the ball in the back of the net again minutes later, but it was ruled out for offside, but there was no flag to save Blues from going further behind when George Ray nodded in from close range to secure the victory.

Defeat for Southend leaves them in the bottom two in League Two, while Tranmere made amends for their home defeat to Crawley on at the weekend by closing the gap to the automatic promotion places to one point.

The first of two successive home games this week, it was far from an ideal night for Mark Molesley’s side who had been left frustrated by their 0-0 draw against Oldham at the weekend, in a game which Blues had plenty of chances to win it.

Molesley made three changes from that trip to Boundary Park as Shaun Hobson, Kyle Taylor and the injured Simeon Akinola made way for Elvis Bwomono, Jason Demetriou and Ricky Holmes, and it was Holmes had the game’s first effort as he tried lobbing Scott Davies two minutes in.

Southend threatened again a few moments later when Reeco Hackett-Fairchild was picked out by a quick pass forward by Tyler Cordner. The winger broke down the right before cutting onto his left, but his low shot was saved by Davies before the visitors scrambled it clear.

Tranmere, who had a date at Wembley to look forward to this Sunday in the Papa John’s Trophy Final, were looking sharp and having some joy down the right, and it was from there where the opening goal came from as Paul Lewis put the visitors in front early on.

Some quick work from Rovers allowed Kaiyne Woolery to be free down the right, with his low cross picking out Lewis whose first-time effort kissed the underside of the crossbar on its way through to open the scoring after just eight minutes.

Rovers carried that momentum with them for the rest of the first-half and after Lewis had a second goal ruled out for offside, Keith Hill’s side doubled their advantage through George Ray as Blues’ troubles deepened.

Ray had moments earlier seen a header blocked from a Lian Feeney corner. Tranmere recycled the ball immediately and Feeney again picked out the towering Ray whose flicked header deceived a motionless James Montgomery to increase their lead to two.

Blues needed a response and Mark Molesley made a double change at the break with Sam Hart and Brandon Goodship coming on, and Goodship was inches away from getting on the end of a scuffed Nathan Ferguson shot that agonisingly went across the face of goal without being converted.

It was only a brief respite for Southend though as Tranmere retook control of the game and were happy to play it around without creating any further chances on goal, clearly happy with their evening’s work up to that point.

The home side did manage to create one clear chance late on when Kyle Taylor got on the end of a deflected Elvis Bwomono effort, but he sliced his shot harmlessly over, as Tranmere comfortably saw out time to pick up three points.

Blues XI: Montgomery, Bwomono, Cordner, Dieng, Clifford (Hart 46’), Hackett-Fairchild, Acquah (Goodship 46’), Demetriou (Taylor 69’), Holmes (Nathaniel-George 69’), Ferguson (McCormack 88’), White (C). Subs Not Used: Seaden, Hobson

Tranmere Rovers XI: Davies, O’Connor, Morris (Nugent 83’), Spearing, Woolery, Macdonald (Blackett-Taylor 90+3’), Feeney, Ray, Lewis, Clarke, Lloyd (Ridehalgh 87’). Subs Not Used: Murphy, Monthe, Crawford, Kirby

Referee: Tim Robinson

Assistants: Nigel Lugg & Robert Hyde

Fourth Official: George Byrne

Scorers:

Southend United: None

Tranmere Rovers: Paul Lewis 8’, George Ray 24’

Yellow Cards:

Southend United: John White 55’, Reeco Hackett-Fairchild 86’

Tranmere Rovers: None

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