Report: Southend United 0-0 Newport
Southend United were held to a 0-0 draw against Newport County in a frustrating rain drenched encounter at Roots Hall this evening.
Neither team managed to break the deadlock but it was Newport who had a huge chance to take all three points after Robbie Willmot blazed a second half penalty wide.
It was a quiet opening with both teams struggling to play the ball on the difficult surface, Harry Worley had the first real chance for the away side in the 10th minute after a failed clearance fell to the defender who saw his low effort blocked well by Mark Phillips with Daniel Bentley unsighted in the Southend goal.
Blues had a huge amount of possession and finally had a clear sight of goal with the half hour mark approaching after a superb Kevan Hurst cross was met by the head of Will Atkinson only for Lenny Pidgeley to parry the effort onto the post.
Southend tested the Newport keeper minutes later with Barry Corr's effort from an acute angle smashed right down the throat of the keeper who got a strong hand to the effort keeping it away from the net.
Pidgeley continued to keep Newport in the game with another fine save, this time denying Lee Barnard after the striker saw his header heavily deflected off Tom Naylor sending the keeper the wrong way before adjusting his body in time.
The rain continued to fall heavily at Roots Hall and with 51 minutes gone County had a huge chance to take the lead after Phillips was adjudged to have brought down Ryan Burge inside the area giving the referee no choice but to point to the spot.
Willmot confidently stepped up for the away side only to blaze his spot kick high and wide of the goal much to the delight of the crowd.
Southend were on the back foot until the hour mark with Michael Timlin unleashing a low left footed strike from distance which went narrowly wide after Pidgeley got the faintest of touches to the ball.
With added time being played Willmot had the opportunity to make up for his earlier penalty mistake after running in clear on goal only to be denied by a superb save by Daniel Bentley who blocked the ball well with his chest.
Substitute Conor Clifford created space 25 yards out with his effort sailing over the bar which ended up being the last chance of the match in a frustrating affair for Southend.
The rain was persistent at Roots Hall with neither team having the cutting edge to take all three points as Southend played their third game in six days in all competitions.
Southend United - Bentley, White, Phillips, Thompson, Coker, Hurst, Leonard, Timlin (Clifford 75) Atkinson, Corr (Straker 45) Barnard (Eastwood 61) (subs) Laird, Eastwood, Straker, Clifford, Payne, Gomis, Smith
Newport County AFC - Pidgeley, Pipe, Sandell, Worley, Naylor, Willmot, Chapman (Porter 71) Minshull, Burge (Flynn 82) Jeffers (Jolley 73), Howe (subs) Stephens, Hughes, Porter, Flynn, Jackson, Anthony, Jolley