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Mkandawire knows what to expect

15 November 2012

On loan Tamika Mkandawire knows what to expect from Torquay United on Saturday.

Current Gulls boss Martin Ling signed the midfielder for Leyton Orient in 2007.

And as a result the midfielder is well versed in how he likes his sides to play.

“They are a good side that likes to play football,” the 29-year-old told the official website.

“I know the manager Martin Ling from my time at Orient and he will like to get the ball down and play.

“We have to match them work rate wise but also take our game to them.”

Mkandawire’s arrival has seen Southend record a win and a draw in the past two matches.

That has lifted Paul Sturrock’s side to 11th in the table, two points behind Saturday’s opponents.

But the Millwall loanee is just enjoying playing some competitive football again, after nearly 12 months out of action with a knee problem.

“You don’t realise how much you miss it until you get back into it,” he said. 

“There are still things I need to work on but I feel like I am getting my fitness back and I am on the right path.

“The reserve league is very much an under 21 thing now.

“Most senior players like myself don’t really get much out of the games. They aren’t competitive and nothing is riding on it, so when you are an established pro you need that competitive edge I am getting here.”

That transition from the Championship to a new side was made easier with the arrival of Marc Laird from Leyton Orient alongside him.

Laird was a former teammate at the Den and joined just a few days prior to Mkandawire.

“League Two is different to the Championship as it can be a bit frantic at times,” he said.

“But it is a good standard of football and I am more than happy to be here.

 “Coming in with Marc Laird at the same time has helped. I know Lairdy from over at Millwall so that helped me settle in. I feel with Michael Timlin also it is a good combination and we are getting to know each other game-by-game.”

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