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Match Reports

Brown: Composure needed in final third

31 January 2014

Phil Brown on Southend United's battling 0-0 draw with Newport County on Friday night

Phil Brown was left frustrated with his side’s quality and composure in the final third as Blues drew 0-0 with Newport County at Roots Hall on Friday night.

Brown admitted Blues were doing everything right in the build up, but just lacked that composure and calmness in the final third of the pitch.

Blues’ boss was still pleased with the point at home to keep the momentum going and maintain the eight point gap between themselves and Newport.

He said: “We just lacked that bit of composure when we got in to good areas and it has been the case for a few games now where it has let us down.

“We went to 4-4-2 tonight to play Lee Barnard up with Barry Corr and he’s the type of player who does bring that composure in front of goal.

“Kevan Hurst has shown that composure this season but we need to get some of the other midfielders showing that and helping to add goals to the team.

“Lee was a bit isolated in the second-half after we had to take Barry off with double-vision, and he managed an hour which we knew would be about it.

“Freddy came on and made a difference, he could’ve won us the game because he looked bright, but it wasn’t to be tonight.

“We could have lost the game with the penalty but in the end I think you have to take the point from tonight in poor conditions.

“But the players still tried to play their football because that is what we’ve been drilling into them, maybe we need to try to mix it up a bit sometimes.”

Brown was also pleased with Daniel Bentley’s save late on to deny Robbie Willmott a late winner, adding: “He made an important save and when our defence has been breached this season he has been there.

“I thought we looked strong defensively and it was good to be able to welcome John White back. He looked good despite still having a little bit of an issue.

“Luke Prosser should be back in training on Monday with a protective mask on and hopefully will be available for Mansfield Town next weekend.”

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