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Match Report: Southend United 0-0 Plymouth Argyle

10 January 2015

Another frustrating 0-0 draw for the Blues against the Pilgrims.

It was to be another frustrating afternoon for Southend United as the Blues were held to another Sky Bet League Two 0-0 draw, this time against Plymouth Argyle at Roots Hall.

A much improved second half saw the hosts go close to finding a winner on occasions, but it wasn't to be against fellow play-off side Plymouth.

Boss Phil Brown gave a start to new boy Joe Pigott, who signed earlier in the day from Charlton Athletic, with Barry Corr missing out on the squad altogether after picking up a troublesome back injury in midweek.

A defensive reshuffle saw Jerome Williams partner Adam Thompson at centre back, following the suspensions of both Cian Bolger and Luke Prosser.

It was a good start from Blues at a blustery Roots Hall, and inside the opening three minutes, Ryan Leonard went close to scoring against the club where he began his career; firing just wide of the target after

However, in the opening 15 minutes, it was Plymouth who were looking dangerous, with home goalkeeper Dan Bentley making smart stops with his legs to deny Lewis Alessandra and then Andy Kellett, when both were clean through.

For Blues, Shaq Coulthirst saw his tame effort grabbed by goalkeeper Luke McCormick mid-way through the half, as the visitors stopped Blues getting any real momentum in the opening 45 minutes.

Coulthirst again went close as the first 45 drew to an end, slashing wide from a narrow angle.

After the break both teams looked to come out of the traps quickest, and after Jason Banton smashed wide just a minute after the restart, new man Pigott curles just past McCormick's left-hand post from outside the box

The live Coulthirst went close again on 55 minutes, forcing McCormick into a strong save from a powerful strike after a long pass forward by captain John White.

After the hour mark, Blues had two good chances to open the scoring. Firstly, a great run from Coulthirst saw him go from the halfway line into the box before hitting straight at McCormick, despite having Pigott in space.

And then it was Pigott's turn just moments later, smashing over the bar following a neat and intelligent cut back by David Worrall.

Coulthirst was causing Plymouth problems with his pace throughout the game, and after he won a corner, the ball was cleared to Leonard, who fired just over the crossbar from 25 yards, on 72 minutes.

With 12 minutes of the match remaining, McCormick pulled off two tremendous saves to deny White and then Williams from close range, as Blues upped the ante at Roots Hall.

But with ten minutes left, Argyle had two great chances to find the breakthrough. The impressive Andy Kellett saw his strike deflect off Flanagan and hit the bar before Reid smashed the rebound against the upright.

Blues: Bentley; White (c), Thompson, Williams, Coker; Deegan, Payne, (Weston, 70), Leonard; Worrall, Pigott, Coulthirst (Atkinson, 84)

Subs: P. Smith, Timlin, Clifford, Jason Williams, Matsuzaka

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