Coughlan hoping players can show their credentials at the DW SatdiumSouthend United Assistant Manager, Graham Coughlan believes that the Blues players should use the weekend’s game with Wigan Athletic to prove why they can be challenging at the top of the division next season.
The team travel to the DW Stadium on Saturday to face a Latics side closing in on sealing a return to the Sky Bet Championship.
Whilst hoping the players can crash the promotion party, Coughlan also sees the game as a great opportunity for the Blues to show their quality; putting themselves against one of the best teams in the division.
“The league table doesn’t lie, They’re top for a reason.” He said.
“They are a good team, they’ve got a strong squad, a very good footballing team with a good manager with some good individuals.
“So you’re looking to go there to make an impression, show our credentials and we’re looking to compete with teams like that.
“We’ve done that throughout the course of the season in patches, we’ve gone away from home and some of our performances have been really pleasing.
“So we’re going there looking for a reaction from the other night and put in another away performance that we can be proud of.”
With three games left in the domestic season, Southend will be looking to finish in the top half of the league in their first season back in the third-tier.
Although recent results have put paid to the club’s play-off hopes, Coughlan believes that the side isn’t far away from being genuine promotion contenders ahead of next season.
“I’ve been lucky enough to be in Wigan’s situation when you’ve got a promotion riding on it.
“I’ve seen both sides of the fence and I know which side I’d rather be on to be quite honest with you.
“But there is no reason in the world why Southend United can’t be doing what Wigan are doing in 12 months’ time.
“We’ve done ok this season, but ok isn’t good enough. Had we had more consistency we possibly could be one of the ones up that end of the table.
“There’s a little bit to be sorted out but I don’t think we’re too far away to be quite honest.”