Blues boss Phil Brown on a disappointing home defeat to Exeter City
Phil Brown was understandably disappointed as Southend United ‘lost to the better team’ as Exeter City won 3-2 at Roots Hall on Saturday afternoon.
Mark Phillips’ double wasn’t enough for Blues, who had recovered from going 1-0 down to lead 2-1, before the Grecians produced a comeback of their own to win it 3-2.
Blues boss was disappointed his side hadn’t been able to see the game out in front of the home crowd at Roots Hall.
He said: “There seemed to be a real nervousness as the game wore on, but we never really got going all game and that’s really frustrating for me as a manager.
“I think what hurts the most, and I’m big enough to admit it, is that we were beaten by the better team in the end today.
“When you’re leading 2-1 at home you’ve got to dig deep and stay switched on, but they’ve gone short at a corner and scored an absolute world class goal.
“I think that was about all that was going to beat Dan Bentley at that stage. He was the main reason for us leading 2-1 at half-time.
“But then we have a couple of chances through Kevan Hurst and the young Jason Williams which we’re unable to take and they go down the other end and score.
“Again we sort of switched off from a set piece and they picked it up at the back post, cut inside and scored. It was bitterly disappointing.”
Blues’ two goals had come from set pieces, and while Brown says that is something he had worked on with his side during the week, he was frustrated they hadn’t made more of balls into the box after taking the lead.
He added: “We worked on set pieces while we were in Portugal and again at West Ham’s training ground on Friday when we were there.
“We got the rewards with the two goals but then we didn’t really threaten too often from set pieces in the second-half and that was another disappointment.
“It seems as they we’ve hit a bit of a crossroad in our season. We’ve got to get over that as quickly as possible and try and kick-on.
“Hartlepool visit here next and that’s a really important game to try and open up a gap between them and ourselves.”