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Match Reports

Phil Brown: The players' mentality was first class

11 April 2015

Boss delighted with his team after third consecutive victory and clean sheet.

Southend United manager Phil Brown praised the mentality of his squad as the Blues recorded their third consecutive victory and third clean sheet in a row with a 1-0 win over Tranmere Rovers and Roots Hall.

Barry Corr's close range finish – his ninth goal in his last 11 games – won the game for Southend, who had to ride out the Tranmere storm late on.

“Tranmere came to play with three defenders and five in midfield and we were dealt a blow with Ryan Leonard missing out,” Brown reflected.

“Gary Deegan came in and it's up to him to keep the shirt now. That's the mentality of the squad we have here.

“Jake's worked so hard today and Barry was suffering before the game and I wanted at least 45 minutes from him. We got 65 minutes out of him and he got the winning goal as well.”

Southend number one Dan Bentley equaled Mervyn Cawston's record of ten consecutive home clean sheets, having not conceded at Roots Hall since 25th October 2014 against Bury.

And Brown was full of praise for his goalkeeper after another shut out.

“One day the Chairman will flatten this place and build a new stadium, and if anyone comes in and equals that record I'll be hugely surprised. We have made this a fortress and ten clean sheets on the bounce is phenomenal. We've made it hard for teams to score here, let alone win.

“Hats off to the players to get that amount of clean sheets. Dan's a driven and motivated individual. He had to wear a mask today but he's been impeccable all season, apart from that one mistake at Shrewsbury. One mistake in a season is unbelievable.

And the boss still isn't writing off the top three challenge for automatic promotion.

“We have five games and plenty to play for,” Brown said after the win.

“The mentality of the squad has been first class. We have to play teams who still have plenty to play for. If somebody had given me 72 points with five games to go I would have taken it but the top three have set an unbelievable pace.

“Fingers crossed Ryan Leonard will be on the training ground on Monday morning. He's a young lad and hopefully he'll be be back sooner rather than later.”

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