Report: Southend United 2-0 Stevenage
Southend United continued their solid start to the new Sky Bet League 2 season, with a comfortable 2-0 victory over Stevenage at Roots Hall.
An early Myles Weston strike and superb curled effort from outside the penalty-area by Barry Corr was more than enough to seal all three points for the Blues, as they made it six points from six.
Manager Phil Brown named an unchanged side from last weekend’s victory at Accrington Stanley, once again opting for a 4-2-4 formation.
Southend created the first chance of the game on five minutes as Ben Coker picked out Shaquile Coulthirst, before the midfielder’s effort from 25 yards went inches wide of Sam Beasant’s goal.
Blues’ constant early pressure paid off in the ninth minute as goalkeeper David Bentley’s up field kick was flicked on by Corr which found Myles Weston, who placed his shot beyond Beasant with ease to make it 1-0.
The visitors created their first opportunity in the 19th minute as Dean Wells found himself in space, but failed to test Bentley as his curling shot went over.
Moments later, Southend deservedly doubled their lead as Corr and Coker quickly exchanged passes before the left-back superbly curled his shot home from the edge of the area.
Boro started to pile the pressure on the Southend defence, almost getting themselves back into the game on 28 minutes, but Bentley fantastically flung his body across goal to deny Adam Marriott from 10 yards out.
The away side continued to search for a goal before the break, but were unable to create any clear-cut opportunities, twice trying their luck from long-range through Simon Walton and Bira Dembele respectively, with both attempts off target.
Stevenage’s Chris Whelpdale then had the chance to get his side off the mark after being played through by Marriott, but again the ever-impressive Bentley was on hand to keep the midfielder out as the referee signalled half-time.
Blues started the second-half brightly, seeing majority of the possession and testing their opposition on 49 minutes as Kevan Hurst’s effort was parried away following a cleverly worked free-kick.
Corr nearly grabbed his second of the game in the 66nd minute, as his left-footed toe-poke was tipped wide by the fully-stretched Beasant, who denied the midfielder again seconds later, comfortably saving his long-range shot.
Coulthirst came inches away from sealing all three points for Blues, as he tried his luck from 30 yards out, but his strike went over.
Nevertheless, Southend comfortably strolled to a 2-0 victory, maintaining their solid early start to League 2.
Attendance: 5,397 (557 Stevenage fans).
Starting 11: Bentley, White, Bolger, Prosser, Coker, Hurst (Worrall), Clifford, Coulthirst (Barnard), Leonard, Corr, Weston
Substitutes: P Smith, Ibenfeldt, Thompson, Payne, Layne