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Phil Brown: I'm looking forward to going up against an old friend at Fleetwood Town

6 August 2015

The boss is looking to start the season with a victory at Highbury Stadium on Saturday.

Southend United manager Phil Brown is looking forward to going up against an old friend when Blues take on Fleetwood Town on Saturday for our first game back in League 1.

The boss knows Graham Alexander from the pair's time at Preston North End, and Brown jokes that he 'owes him one' from their time at North End!

“I gave Graham his chance in life!” the boss begins.

“What I mean by that is that he was 40-41 when I brought him back to Preston from Burnley. He's steeped in Lancastrian history and has his chance at Fleetwood. He's a great character and one of the greatest penalty takers.

“It was a penalty miss from him that actually got me the sack at Preston. He missed one in a JPT game and the next day I was sacked, so I certainly owe him one!

“In all seriousness, it'll be good to catch up with him and may the best man – and team – win.”

And Brown wants a good start to the season from his players to 'take the pressure off'.

“Getting off to a good start is important. It gets those three points on the board and takes the pressure off slightly – that's what we'll be aiming to do on Saturday.

“The majority of the players are on the training ground today, which is a good thing ahead of the opening game. We've improved in terms of quality since last season.

“We achieved what we wanted last season and the same applies this year. We want to have a right go of it – we're not in League 1 to just make up the numbers.

“Saturday is hugely important to put the right foot forward. It's a winnable game. We're confident and ambitious, we believe in ourselves and we're capable of achieving anything this season.

“We're still on the hunt for more players. We've made significant progress with the three players we've brought in.”

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