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Read Mark Molesley's programme notes from Roots Review ahead of tonight's game...

26 January 2021

I would firstly like to wish you all a very good evening and I trust you are keeping safe and well.

I am writing these notes prior to our game against Mansfield Town due to print deadlines and after the defeat to Cambridge United, which ended our four-game winning run at home.

We were desperate to keep the good run going at Roots Hall and at half time were well on course to do so after a near-dominant performance in the first half.

It was a classic game of two halves and we momentarily switched off for their goals which was frustrating, but if we are being critical, we needed to show a bit more guile going forward in the second half and that was disappointing.

After the game it’s easy to look at the result and get discouraged but that would be forgetting the first half where we were in the ascendency against one of the top teams in the league. We have to stay positive, show our character again and bounce back and that comes through hard work, brutally analysing everything and sticking together as a group.

We will be ready to go again this evening against a Bradford side who haven’t played much of late due to several postponements. They could be either really fresh after some time off and work on the training ground or they could be lacking some sharpness; whatever turns out to be the case is not something we can concern ourselves too much about. What we have to do is just concentrate on putting in a big effort and sticking to our principles.

Since we last played Bradford they’ve had a change in management and Mark Trueman and Conor Sellars have taken interim charge. They’ve been active in this transfer window and have a lot of new players so we are expecting another tough game.

I want to sign-off on a positive note and it is was superb to hear that the Shrimpers Trust-led Christmas Appeal on behalf of “Off The Streets” which the players and staff donated towards had a far-reaching impact! In total over £2,000 was raised and the generosity of not just the players but the Shrimpers Trust and the Southend United supporters has helped to ensure that over 40 nights of safe/warm accommodation was made available to rough sleepers during these tough winter months. This shows what we can do when we come together. As a club it’s important we give back to the community who give us so much and we will continue checking in with a great local charity in the months and hopefully years ahead.

Thank you for all your continued support. We know you are following the games and continuing to get behind us from home, and we really do hope that before too long we’ll feel the support in person again to give us that extra edge.

Enjoy the game!

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