Southend’s long wait for a win at Glanford Park goes on as goals from Kevin van Veen, Conor Townsend and a Michael Turner own goal helped Scunthorpe United beat Blues 3-1.
Phil Brown’s side took the lead against the run of play midway through the first-half when Jason Demetriou’s deflected strike deceived Matt Gilks to put Southend 1-0 up.
Having missed a number of chances before Southend’s goal, Kevin van Veen would get Scunthorpe level with a close-range header that was just squeezed over the line.
In the second-half, the Iron would go in front for the first time when some quick-thinking from Hakeeb Adelakun would find the run of Conor Townsend who swept the ball in from a corner.
And Southend’s fate was sealed when Michael Turner would slice an Adelakun corner into his own net late on to condemn Blues to a fourth straight defeat.
The win would see Scunthorpe pick up their first win in five and extend a run which has seen Blues fail to win away at the Iron since 1983, with no win coming at Glanford Park.
After successive league defeats against Bristol Rovers and Bradford City, today was another bitter blow for Phil Brown’s side with tough games against Charlton and Shrewsbury to come.
Following last weekend’s late defeat at home to Bradford, the Blues boss made three changes to his side with Simon Cox, Marc-Antoine Fortune and skipper Anton Ferdinand coming in.
Both teams went into the game in poor form with Southend losing their last three whilst Scunthorpe had failed to win any of their last four in all competitions.
But it was Blues that came out of the blocks early, creating a half-chance inside the first 30-seconds when Stephen McLaughlin’s flashed cross was too quick for Jason Demetriou to prod on target.
Almost immediately after Southend were indebted to Mark Oxley for keeping Scunthorpe out at the other end when he pulled off a superb save to stop Kevin van Veen scoring from close range.
Van Veen was proving a menace up front early on and quarter of an hour in he was picked out again with a cross, heading the ball against the crossbar before committing a foul going for the rebound.
The Scunthorpe number 10 was proving difficult to handle and after Oxley was second to a loose ball inside the area, van Veen had an open goal to aim for only for Ben Coker to put in a superb block.
Southend had been second best so far in the half, but against the run of play, a huge slice of luck would allow Blues to take the lead through Jason Demetriou.
The Cypriot international received the ball 30-yards from goal and took aim at Matt Gilks, seeing his strike take a wicked deflection to wrong-foot the Iron goalkeeper and hit the back of the net.
Blues couldn’t believe their luck and they were almost in dreamland when Josh Wright came close to a second, running onto a low cross only for his shot to be blocked away for a corner
Southend though wouldn’t be able to see their advantage through to the break as Scunthorpe would level the game after the half-hour mark with van Veen finally breaking through the Blues defences.
A corner from the right was initially dealt with before Josh Morris’ low cross caused chaos inside the penalty area with van Veen nodding the ball across the line with the linesman giving the goal.
Having picked up a knock earlier in the first-half, Oxley failed to reappear after the interval and was replaced in goal by Nathan Bishop who was making his first-team debut.
Just like in the first-half, Blues started the half quickly and carved out a chance less than a minute after the interval when McLaughlin’s looping header floated just over Gilks’ crossbar.
Scunthorpe responded with Conor Townsend’s low ball into the penalty area which needed to be bundled away by Coker to prevent Morris from tapping in at the far post.
The home side were growing in confidence and only a last-ditch tackle from John White would stop Tom Hopper from putting the home side in front for the first time as he went through on goal.
Blues’ stay of execution though would only last a matter of seconds as quick thinking from Hakeeb Adelakun picked out the run of Townsend whose side-footed effort found the far corner.
It looked like Southend’s wait for a first-ever win at Glanford Park would go on with the Iron going close to wrapping up the win when a van Veen header was cleared off the line by Demetriou.
With just a goal in it, Southend still felt they could get something from the game and Anthony Wordsworth went close when his low strike was kept out by the feet of Gilks.
Scunthorpe should have made the game safe when Adelakun beat the offside trap before rounding Bishop, but his touch let him down as he went wide with Bishop recovering to save at his near post.
But form the resulting corner the points were secured from Adelakun’s corner was sliced into his own net by Michael Turner to ensure the Iron picked up their first win in five matches.
Scunthorpe United XI: Gilks (C), Townsend, Wallace, Ojo, van Veen (Church 88’), Morris, Hopper, Adelakun (Lewis 90’), Holmes, Goode, Burgess. Subs Not Used: Watson, Madden, Redmond, Sutton, Butroid
Blues XI: Oxley (Bishop 46’), Coker, Wordsworth, Ferdinand (C), Turner, Fortune, Cox (Wabo 87’), McLaughlin, Demetriou, Wright, White. Subs Not Used: Hendrie, Ba, Yearwood, McGlashan, Kyprianou
Referee: Martin Coy
Assistants: Paul Newhouse & Lee Freeman
Fourth Official: Sebastian Stockbridge
Scunthorpe United: Kevin van Veen 32’, Connor Townsend 63’, Michael Turner O.G. 87’
Southend United: Jason Demetriou 25’
Scunthorpe United: None
Southend United: Anthony Wordsworth 35’