Blues out of the Essex Senior Cup following defeat to Harlow Town.
It was not a night to remember as Southend United suffered a defeat – and with it elimination from the Essex Senior Cup – after a 4-2 home defeat to Harlow Town.
Despite being 2-1 up at one stage, the visitors battled back and ran out comfortable winners at Roots Hall.
First team players Jack Payne, Shaq Coulthirst, Conor Clifford and Cian Bolger all started the game, which also involved a number of youth team players.
It was an open start to the game, with the best chance falling to the visitors just 12 minutes in. A ball in by skipper James Smith caused problems in the box but Fabion Simms blazed over from just six yards.
Just after 20 minutes, Harlow took the lead. A urling free kick from Jarod Small found the head of top scorer Alex Read, who glanced a header past Ted Smith and into the bottom corner of the net.
Blues responded almost immediately, and quick feet from Payne saw the playmaker create a bit of space before whipping an excellent strike into the top corner of the net via the crossbar.
At the other end, and Harlow had another good chance to regain the lead but winger Shane Stamp somehow missed the target.
Five minutes before half time and Blues took the lead through Coulthirst, who managed to get past his marker before firing under the body of goalkeeper Edward Thompson from an acute angle.
Just prior to half time, Clifford saw his strike parried, as Blues went in at the break with the slender advantage.
After the break, Isaac Layne saw his powerful effort stopped by Thompson, and just after the hour mark, David Cowley's effort tested Ted Smith.
On 67 minutes, Michael Toner twisted in the box before firing inches wide of the post, via a deflection.
A minute later and Harlow got even closer. It was goalscorer Read, who rose above everyone but saw his header hit the bar and go out of play.
With 19 minutes remaining, Harlow grabbed an equaliser through James Smith, who rifled home from long range, before in the 74th minute, the visitors took the lead with Read again, lofting a volley over Smith and into the back of the net.
And Harlow added a fourth with seven minutes of the game remaining, when Cowley finished off a great move, smashing home following a run and cross from the left-hand side.
And that was to be that, as Blues bowed out of the competition for another year.
Blues: T. Smith (c), Jordan Williams, Jason Williams (Brown, 73), Payne, Layne, Coulthirst (Johnson, 61), Bridge, Clifford, Matsazuka, Bolger. Farrell
Unused: Bexon, Salami, Cotton