Southend United vs Coventry City...
Southend United will be looking to extend their unbeaten league run to six games tomorrow afternoon as they entertain Coventry City in the first of a home doubleheader at Roots Hall.
Blues claimed a third successive away win last time out against Gillingham and they’ll be hoping to bring some of that form on the road back home, where Chris Powell’s side have won just twice.
Mark Robins’ Coventry made an immediate return to League One last season and they’ve made a decent start to this campaign, sitting in 12th just two points and three places below Blues.
They travel south off the back of a late win against Wycombe Wanderers last weekend with their last away trip seeing the Sky Blues come from 1-0 down to beat Charlton 2-1 at The Valley.
Southend United: WLDWWW
Coventry City: WDWLDL
14th March 2017: Coventry City 0 vs 2 (Ranger, Leonard) Southend United
10th December 2016: Southend United (Wordsworth, Ferdinand, McLaughlin) 3 vs 1 (Agyei) Coventry City
23rd January 2016: Southend United (Payne, Barnett 2) 3 vs 0 Coventry City
Blues’ joint-top goalscorer Tom Hopper and defender John White should be back in contention tomorrow afternoon after both missed out against Gillingham with hamstring problems.
Chris Powell felt the trip to the Priestfield Stadium came “a day or two” too soon for the pair who’ll also be re-joined by full-back Jason Demetriou who returns from international duty with Cyprus.
Centre-back Harry Lennon made his first-team return late in the game against Gillingham last week and will be pushing for more minutes while Harry Bunn closes in on a return having returned to training.
It all means that boss Chris Powell has a near "fully fit squad" for the game, as he said himself in his pre-match press conference.
Coventry are close to full strength after a number of Sky Blues players returned during the club’s u23s win against Colchester United in midweek.
Jodi Jones returned from illness to feature along with left-back Brandon Mason. Jack Grimmer returned to training this week with Jordan Shipley available again after international duty.
Chris Powell, Southend United Manager:
“They’ve got a manager who is in charge for the second time in Mark Robins who is somebody I’ve come up against. Our paths didn’t cross at Huddersfield but I know him and they’re playing some good stuff, they’re in a good place. They’ve acquitted themselves really well in League One which happens when you have some momentum.
“They’re quite a young team, I know Michael Doyle isn’t – he’s been around a long time – but he lends guile and experience to that team, so we know what they’re about and it will be a tough game for us, but obviously we’ve got to make it as tough as we can for them.”
Mark Robins, Coventry City Manager:
"They are doing really well, they have had a change of shape and we will have to be on our game and be focused and concentrated and go and play our game as well.
"We have got our own threats and we have to look at that, we know what they have been doing and we’ll look to try and make it as difficult as possible for them.”
"It is always a difficult place to go to, tight pitch, tight ground, good atmosphere, we’d be taking a few supporters as usual and we are looking forward to it."