Phil Brown on midfielder Kevan Hurst's new contract, which he signed last Friday
Manager Phil Brown believes Kevan Hurst signing a new contract with Southend United is a real statement of intent from the football club.
Midfielder Hurst signed a new two-year deal with Blues last Friday that will see him remain at Roots Hall until 2016.
Blues’ boss says the fact Hurst has committed to the club for another two years, shows Blues are moving in the right direction.
He said: “It’s great business by the club. Last summer we lost two players who were in the PFA Team of the Year and there was a bit of negativity.
“But I want to have long term success at Southend United and Kevan is a massive part of that. I want players who want to be part of that, and he does.
“I believe a manager needs three or four transfer windows to put his mark on the team, but Kevan was brought in by Paul Sturrock and he’s now a big part of my regime here.
“I wanted to keep him at the football club because quite simply he’s been absolutely fantastic for us so far this season. He’s got the most goals and most assists, which tells you all you need to know.
“It’s a real sign that the club is moving in the right direction. Hopefully we can get some more new deals announced in the near future.”
Brown has been thrilled with the midfielder’s form this season, and believes now the contract has been sorted, he can get back to focusing solely on his football.
“Kevan has set an example so far this season to the rest of the squad in terms of performance levels,” Blues’ boss added.
“He’s maybe had a little bit of a dip, which might not necessarily be contract reasons, but now it’s all sorted, it’ll give him a big lift.”
Brown also thanked chairman Ron Martin for his support in getting the new contract for Hurst agreed early, adding: “The Chairman has been extremely supportive of myself, and he’s made a statement here about the direction he wants to take the club.
“Kevan wants to help take Southend in that direction, and I am delighted he will be a part of trying to get us into a higher division, and before long, hopefully playing for us in a higher division.”