Blues fell to a 3-0 defeat to National League South side Concord Rangers this evening at the Aspect Arena.
A youthful Southend side took to the field on Tuesday night and quickly found themselves trailing when Concord’s striker picked off a loose pass from Ade Osimeh before rifling home from 20-yards.
Concord’s frontman soon doubled the home side’s lead when a fizzed cross from the left bounced around the Southend area before being tapped in from close range.
And with less than 15 minutes on the clock, Concord and their number 21 had a hat-trick as a cross from the right fell kindly for the striker to fire in his and the Beachboys’ third of the evening.
Blues’ first shot in anger at Concord’s goal came when Isaac Hutchinson found space in the middle of the park allowing the midfielder to send a low drive that had to be parried away by the goalkeeper.
The visitors’ best chances though came from set-pieces with Miles Mitchell-Nelson almost grabbing his second goal of pre-season with a far-post header that hit the side netting.
Emile Acquah got even closer to getting on the scoresheet when a short corner was clipped into the area finding his run, but his header back across goal came back off the post before going wide.
Blues controlled the second 45 minutes and created several chances to reduce the arrears after the interval but they just couldn’t find the breakthrough, try as they might.
Hutchinson looked certain to grab one back midway through the second-half when the ball came to him on the edge of the area only for his effort to be cleared off the line by a recovering defender.
With 15 minutes remaining, Mark Molesley made seven outfield changes, having already brought on O’Shane Stewart on the hour mark, but they were unable to get past a determined Concord defence.
Terrell Egbri had a strong shout for a penalty waved away late on before Jordan Green had a chance to score his first Southend goal but he dragged his effort wide of the left post.
Southend travel to Gillingham this Saturday for their first competitive game of the season in the Carabao Cup First Round before the following weekend’s league opener against Harrogate Town.
Blues Starting XI: Seaden, Howard (Bwomono 74’), Kyprianou (Klass 74’), Mitchell-Nelson (Taylor 74’), Osimeh, Kinali (Egbri 74’), Hutchinson (Phillips 74’), Gard (Green 74’), Trialist (Stewart 60’), Kelman (Goodship 74’), Acquah