Chris Powell is looking at tonight’s game against Bishops Stortford as an important chance for some players to stake a claim.
Southend face the Bostick Premier Division outfit at the ProKit Stadium tonight – 7.45pm KO.
And ahead of the penultimate pre-season friendly, Powell explained why the game has become a first-team fixture and will include a sprinkling of U23 players.
“I wanted to get as close to 90 [minutes] with a lot of them against Leeds, but I also wanted to give some of the lads a go because they had family and friends in the stands, and because I wanted them to play a part in a decent friendly,” said Powell.
“But they will need minutes because if they don’t get any on Tuesday, obviously Orient is the last one and you’re looking for players to get 75, 80 or even 90 minutes before the start of the season.
“Jason Demetriou got 90 minutes against Leeds, so we’ve got to balance that out.
“It’s an important game because we’ll be taking the game as a first team, we’ll have a few U23s, but I’ll be looking at it to see who is still hungry to get into the team.
“That’s why we’ve taken the game instead of the U23s.”
Admission is £6 for adults, £4 concessions with accompanied U12s free.