King's Lynn Town vs Southend United...
Southend United take a step into the unknown tomorrow as they make their first-ever appearance in the National League against a side that they’ve never faced before in King’s Lynn Town.
Phil Brown’s side will travel to Norfolk looking to get their new campaign off to the best possible start and they’ll be backed by a huge number of travelling Blues fans against The Linnets.
Having not travelled to a single away game since February 2020, over 1,000 Southend supporters will be making the trip to The Walks Stadium hoping to see their side pick up three points.
King’s Lynn finished 21st last season in the National League but were reprieved from relegation due to the curtailment of all divisions from Step 2 down meaning no sides went up or down.
As a result, The Linnets will be taking part in only their second-ever season at this level with the club having enjoyed a meteoric rise after being reformed in 2010 and joining the United Counties League.
The Norfolk side went full-time over the summer having been one of a small number of National League clubs to be part-time last season, in the hope they can improve on last season’s campaign.
Managed by Ian Culverhouse, The Linnets’ most notable signing of the summer has to be Junior Morias – the former Peterborough striker who joined on a permanent deal in the summer.
Although not much can be read into results when it comes to pre-season, Blues did pick up three wins, two draws and two defeats from their warm-up games ahead of the new campaign.
Southend were victorious against Great Wakering Rovers, Harlow Town and Norwich City’s u23s with Blues managing to score in every single one of their pre-season outings.
King’s Lynn’s pre-season fixture list saw them too pick up three wins from their seven matches, beating Gorleston, Stratford Town and an impressive 1-0 win over Championship side Peterborough.
From The Boss:
"We’ve got to create a new vibe and a new environment which is what we’ve tried to do with the new signings, the players that have signed on loan, the ones that have re-signed and the ones that have come through the ranks.
"At the moment, yes it looks like we’ve moved away from the back-to-back relegations and turned a corner but you’ll not find that out until we start playing. When that first whistle goes, we’ve got to have a mentality that’s different to the last few seasons; totally different.
"It’s got to be on the front foot, positive, it’s got to be driven by fitness levels and the motivation to win things. That expectancy to lose, which has been around the club for too long, has to change. We’ve got a responsibility to change that, myself included."
Blues Team News:
All nine of Blues’ summer signings are in line to face King’s Lynn tomorrow with the club this week confirming the arrival of Matt Dennis and Hamzad Kargbo on loan as Phil Brown’s latest recruits.
Dennis and Kargbo join Steve Arnold, Josh Coulson, James Dunne, Abu Ogogo, Rhys Murphy and Sam Dalby through the door at Southend, along with Jack Bridge who’s returned for a second spell.
One definite absentee tomorrow will be full-back Tom Clifford who picked up an ankle injury against Ebbsfleet United in pre-season and is expected to be out for several weeks.
Daniel Middleton will be the man in the middle at The Walks Stadium tomorrow afternoon as he begins his fifth season as a National League referee.
Middleton officiated 19 games last season, with his final game of the campaign seeing him oversee a 4-2 win for Wrexham against tomorrow’s hosts, King’s Lynn.
Over the course of last season, Middleton issued a total of 46 yellow cards – an average of 2.4 per game – and five red cards. It’ll be his first visit to King’s Lynn since November 2020.
Elsewhere in the National League:
Aldershot Town vs Chesterfield
Barnet vs Notts County
FC Halifax Town vs Maidenhead United
Solihull Moors vs Wrexham*
Stockport County vs Dagenham & Redbridge
Torquay United vs Altrincham
Wealdstone vs Woking
Weymouth vs Boreham Wood
Bromley P-P Grimsby Town
Dover Athletic P-P Solihull Moors
Wrexham P-P Yeovil Town
*Solihull & Wrexham agreed to play each other after their opening games were postponed
How to Follow:
Blues fans that aren’t travelling to The Walks Stadium tomorrow will still be able to follow all the live action by subscribing to Blues TV where you’ll get live match commentary from the BBC Essex team from all first-team matches this season.
Blues TV costs £4.49 per month or a one-off cost of £45 for the season, with your subscription not only giving you match commentary, but also exclusive access to extended match highlights, full pre-match press conferences, interviews, features and more.
You can also follow live minute-by-minute updates on social media via the Club’s official Twitter account by following @SUFCRootsHall on Twitter, which will ensure you get all the latest news and more throughout the 2021/22 season.