A missed penalty as Blues suffer defeat against Newport County at Rodney Parade.
Blues suffered late defeat to Newport County at Rodney Parade in Sky Bet League Two, with Mark Byrne's goal 20 minutes from time separating the two sides.
However, Blues could have taken the lead ten minutes prior to Byrne's match-winning strike but Myles Weston saw his penalty superbly saved by County 'keeper Joe Day.
Phil Brown made three changes to his Blues side with Jack Payne, David Worrall and Lee Barnard making was for Barry Corr, Weston, and returning captain John White.
Blues began well at a blustery Rodney Parade with Michael Timlin firing over the bar in the early stages after a ball wasn't cleared by the County defence.
The next effort fell to Andrew Hughes, who smashed wide of the target from the edge of the box after a ball out to him from the right-hand side.
Just after the 20 minute mark, the action was back up the other end with Weston, whose cross almost deceived goalkeeper Day.
Moments later and Blues had two great chances to open the scoring through Corr. The striker had one effort cleared off the line before Timlin hit wide of the target on the rebound, before Corr once again saw his poked shot hacked clear again.
Brown's side were looking to get the advantage just prior to half time and ten minutes before the break, Weston got goal-side before seeing his narrow effort stopped by the onrushing Day.
Both sides came out after the interval slowly, but on 57 minutes, skipper White was upfield and got on the end of a Ryan Leonard cross but Day was there again to deny the full back with a great save to tip his volley away.
Minutes later and Blues were awarded a penalty. A cross from Jerome Williams was handled by an opponent – who was sliding in – and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Up stepped Weston but his powerful strike was saved brilliantly by Day, diving to his left to deny the Blues forward.
Ten minutes later and Byrne scored what was t be the winning goal, latching onto a long ball to volley past Dan Bentley and into the bottom corner of the net.
Blues began to throw more men forward in the hope of finding an equaliser, and Leonard's attempt from 25 yards was held at the second time of asking by Day.
A minute later and the Exiles could have added a second goal but Bentley superbly tipped away a superb free kick by Andy Sandell before stopping Byrne when the midfielder went one-on-one with the Southend custodian.
However, that was to be the last real action of the game as Blues failed to get anything from a game they certainly deserved more from for their efforts.