Southend United Manager sat down on Monday afternoon to discuss tonight’s game against Forest Green Rovers.
The Blues boss also explained the reasoning behind the Cambridge United postponement and his disappointment that it couldn’t go ahead.
On the postponement of the Cambridge game…
"It was really frustrating [the game couldn’t go ahead against Cambridge].
"You finally feel that you've broken the tide a bit with the win and clean sheet [against Walsall] and we were really looking forward to building on that but unfortunately Covid, coupled with some other injuries which have come up as well, meant we couldn’t field a team.
"It’s frustrating but we’ve managed to test some scholars so we can fulfil the fixture [against Forest Green]."
On why Forest Green can go ahead but Cambridge couldn’t…
"Harry Kyprianou has come back from his loan so that’s one more into the building. We're able to test some of the scholars so they can come in and another player has finished his self-isolation so that’s opened up our subs bench, because we wouldn’t have been able to put anyone on the bench on Saturday.
"But it still leaves us drastically short, but that's been our luck since we’ve been here.
"It seems one step forward and two steps back sometimes in trying to get our most experienced players on to the pitch at one time. We haven’t been able to do that yet.
"In hardships comes great opportunity, a lot of areas for growth. We can't get down about it.
"We’ve got a big game to prepare for against a very good side and we’ve got some very good players available for that."
On the EFL investigation…
"They will investigate every game that is called off.
"We definitely didn’t want the game off. We’ve got doctors notes, surgeons notes, players long-term injured, positive test results from Covid as well as others needing to self-isolate [due to their proximity].
"We’ve got nothing to hide, we desperately wanted the game on but unfortunately our numbers dipped below a level that you could safely put the game on."
On the first ever meeting between Southend and Forest Green…
"It’s going to be a tough challenge. I’ve got the utmost respect for Forest Green.
"They play a lovely brand of football. A very good side in possession so we’ve got to be at our very best, as we have to every week.
"There’s some big challenges but we should be in confident mood that we showed a good performance and got a win and clean sheet in our last game. There’s something to build on for ourselves."
On James Olayinka’s fitness…
"It’s going to be a late fitness test for James. He was unavailable for the weekend and hasn’t trained much so we’ll have to see how that one goes.
"We’re liaising with Arsenal on that one and our physios here to come up with the best scenario but we’re hopeful."
On those who tested positive…
"They’re going to be missing for the next two games.
"The scholars will have to come in, Kyps has come back from his loan and we might have one injury that will clear up which will allow us to field a team and substitutes."