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Club News

Barker and Leonard Sign New Deals

9 July 2012

Defenders Ryan Leonard and Chris Barker signed new one-year contracts at Roots Hall today.

The duo put pen-to-paper on deals to remain at Southend United for next season. 

And 32-year-old Barker is pleased to be staying in Essex. 

"I have been here two-years now and I feel like the club are going forwards," he told the official website. 

"We were very close to being promoted last year but we didn't do it but if we can get 83 points this year automatics will be a certainty I would have thought. 

"This year we want to make sure of that and ensure there are no ifs and buts this time round."

Blues squad reported back for pre-season training today and Barker admitted it is important to now put last season's disappointment to one side. 

"Last season is old news now and we have signed some new good players," he said. 

"The manager has brought in some competition and that will keep me on my toes which is good. 

"All of the new boys have settled in well and it has been a good pre-season so far." 

Meanwhile, fellow defender Ryan Leonard was looking forward to a big season for himself. 

The former Plymouth Argyle trainee enjoyed a successful first half to the campaign before injury curtailed the end of the season for the 20-year-old. 

"I really like it here and I have enjoyed my time here," said Leonard who was a first year pro last term. 

"I thought I did really well in the first half of the season but I was a bit unlucky with injuries towards the end. 

"Now I am feeling fit and I have started pre-season well. Now I want to build on what I did last year and try and establish myself as a regular starter."

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