Report: Blues beaten by Plymouth
By Rhys Ellingham
Southend United suffered a 2-0 defeat against Plymouth Argyle at Roots Hall this evening in a disappointing affair.
After a goalless first half the away side took the lead through Paul Wotton’s penalty after Bilel Mohsni brought down Joe Bryan inside the area.
The Pilgrims doubled their advantage through Reuben Reid after the striker scored his first goal in 23 appearances for Argyle.
The opening stages of the match were quiet with neither side creating any clear cut chances and a defensive mix up in the 16th minute nearly gave Argyle the lead.
After a low front post cross from Bryan caused confusion between Mohsni and Daniel Bentley, Ryan Cresswell managed to clear the ball to safety under pressure from Reid.
Blues hit back and were inches from taking the lead after Kevan Hurst’s right wing free kick found the centre back at the back post who headed the ball back across the goal just wide of the right hand post.
Southend were let off the hook in the 36th minute after a poor pass from Mohsni gave Reid the chance to run at goal before slotting through Josh Banton, his shot was curling into the bottom corner before Paris Cowan-Hall tapped it in from an offside position with Banton furious at his team mate.
The home side should’ve taken the lead in the 42nd minute after Britt Assombalonga headed over the bar unmarked from 12 yards out.
The striker superbly held off a challenge from Wotton before finding Hurst on the wing, who returned the favour giving Assombalonga the chance in front of goal only to miss the target.
With the scores level at half time, Southend started the second half on top and Freddy Eastwood nearly got his second goal in as many games after his 25 yard free kick found the side netting with some of the Roots Hall crowd thinking the ball had found the goal.
The away side took the lead in the 57th minute from the penalty spot through substitute Wotton after Mohsni brought down the advancing Bryan in the box.
Wotton stepped up comfortably and sent Bentley the wrong way, tucking the ball into the bottom right hand corner of the goal.
Southend instantly looked for a reply with Assombalonga seeing his drilled effort saved well by the legs of Jake Cole from 16 yards out.
Blues made a double substitution just after the hour mark bringing on Gavin Tomlin and Barry Corr for Assombalonga and Eastwood as they looked to create more up front.
It instantly nearly paid off with Tomlin exchanging passes with Mohsni before curling an effort towards goal which Cole managed to claw away with the ball looking destined for the back of the net.
Bryan nearly doubled Argyle’s advantage in the 74th minute after a swift counter attack gave the winger the opportunity to fire at goal on the left but the midfielder dragged his shot just wide.
A minute later the away side doubled their lead through Reid after the striker turned Sean Clohessy inside the box before firing a left footed effort past Bentley eight yards out.
Blues were unable to find a way back into the match as Argyle held on to secure only their fourth away win of the season.