Southend United vs. Doncaster Rovers ? Preview

Last updated : 16 January 2004 By Robert Craven
Dave McSweeney could return after missing out since Boxing Day
United ought to be extremely dejected after missing out on a money-spinning fourth round tie against Chelsea, costing the club in the region of half-a-million pounds and, if rumours are to be believed, a new striker. The 1-0 loss at the McCain Stadium showed deficiencies in the side that were evident earlier in the campaign under Steve Wignall, but had been largely papered over by Steve Tilson and Paul Brush.

As a result of that defeat, and on account of club captain Kevin Maher’s one-match suspension having reached the limit of five yellow cards before the cut off point of 21st February, Tilson has swooped for Dagenham & Redbridge midfielder Mark Bentley for an undisclosed five-figure fee, and the Hertford-born talent will go straight into the starting line-up for tomorrow’s fixture.

What made midweek all the worse for Southend supporters were the rearranged Third Division encounters that took place on Tuesday evening.
Cheltenham Town managed to get a point in their game in hand over the Shrimpers against high-flyong Lincoln City, whilst Macclesfield Town gathered all three in a clash with Bristol Rovers. The scores mean that Blues can only move up a place tomorrow afternoon with a win and a Robins defeat. They remain, though, just seven points from eleventh place, with the match a week on Tuesday at home to York City consituting a game in hand over most.


A clash with
Doncaster may not have come at the right time. Rovers currently lie third in the table, just a point off of top spot having thumped the Shrimpers East London rivals Leyton Orient by five goals to nil last Saturday. However, they have lost both of their previous two matches, admittedly both having been local derbies at Hull City and Huddersfield Town.


One of the vital questions that will need to be sorted out in training at Boots & Laces is whether Darryl Flahavan is fit to take his place in goal for the Seasiders. The Southampton-born custodian suffered a knock to his knee-cap whilst bravely denying goalscorer Mark Quayle during the first half. With regular reserve shotstopper Carl Emberson still suffering with an illness, if Flahavan is unfit, then Ryan Robinson will return to the starting line-up for the first time since the 2-0 defeat to
Lincoln in September.


In defence, Dave McSweeney is ready to come back into the side having sat out four matches after being dismissed at
Swansea City in that remarkable 3-2 win back in December. He may not find a position in the starting eleven straight away, although with none of the back four impressing at the McCain Stadium, Tilson may decide to shake matters up. Jamie Stuart at left-back and Duncan Jupp at right full-back would be the leading candidates for the drop, with Mark Warren pressuring Leon Cort and Lewis Hunt for the central positions.


Bentley will feature alongside Jay Smith, who alongside Maher was one of the few players to impress at all upon the 800-strong travelling contingent in
Yorkshire. Neil Jenkins has come under fire for some sigfnificantly tired performances over the last fortnight, and Steven Clark and Michael Kightly are both potential candidates to take his place. They can also cover the right-hand side, where playmaker Mark Gower has failed to recapture the form he had shown before his suspension against Oxford United.


The front line is the only place where Tilson and Brish seem to have choices at the moment. Leon Constantine and Tesfaye Bramble started the fixture on the northeast coast, and the club’s leading scorers could continue together. However, James Corbett made a late re-entry into the team on Wednesday evening, and could be handed a longer run-out, whilst Drewe Broughton scored in his last appeance for the club before sitting out the defeat to the Seadogs with a ban obtained in the 1-0 reverse against
Oxford. He misses out again but Michael Husbands is fit and raring to go.


Doncaster have no new injury concerns, and having slammed five past the O’s, have failed in a bid to land Exeter City front man James Coppinger to partner Leo Fortune-West. Chris Brown is back in contention after missing that game, but Fran Tierney and Simon Marples, after a hernia operation, will not travel. Michael McIndoe, the close season signing from
Yeovil Town, is the cultured star of a good physical side.

**Meanwhile tomorrow morning Southend United's Under-17 side were due to tackle Leyton Orient in East London, looking to cement the O's place at the foot of the table and get their season back on track after a 2-1 defeat to Cambridge United last week. The Little Gazette intended to be there, but the game was today cancelled due to a waterlogged pitch at the Douglas Eyre Sports Ground in Walthamstow. We hope to be at the rescheduled fixture**

TEAM DETAILS

Likely Squads

Southend United

Doncaster Rovers

4-4-2

Darryl Flahavan

Duncan Jupp

Jamie Stuart

Leon Cort

Lewis Hunt

Mark Gower

Mark Bentley

Jay Smith

Neil Jenkins

Leon Constantine

Tesfaye Bramble

---

Ryan Robinson

Mark Warren

Steven Clark
Michael Husbands

Michael Kightly

---

Che Wilson

Stuart Williams

Anthony Clark

Steve Tilson

Starting Line-Ups

GK

DR

DL

DC

DC

MR

MC

MC

ML

FC

FC

Substitutes

1

2

3

4

5

Also Available

*

*

*

*

4-4-2

Andy Warrington

Jamie Price

Tim Ryan

Mark Albrighton

Steve Foster

JJ Melligan

Paul Green

John Doolan

Michael McIndoe

Gregg Blundell

Leo Fortune-West

---

Barry Richardson

Dave Morley

Peter Hynes

Adriano Rigoglioso

Ricky Ravenhill

---

Chris Brown

Jamie Paterson


MATCH OFFICIALS


Referee:
Trevor Parkes (
West Midlands)

Assistant Referees: Gary Lewis (Cambridgeshire) and Kevin Merchant (Surrey)


Brummie Parkes has now been on the Football League list of officials for five years, and thus far he has proved himself to be someone who shows a number of yellow cards but precious few red ones. This season has witnessed 67 cautions but just two dismissals in 21 games, whilst last year saw Mark Beard, Leon Cort and Graeme Jones all booked and the Shrimpers awarded a penalty in his last Southend game, the 3-0 defeat to Rushden & Diamonds. Prior to that he was the man in the middle for both of the ties in the F.A. Cup second round in 2001/2 when United defeated
Chesterfield, whilst also officiating the 1-0 win at Rushden without any great events taking place. He sent off Mark Rawle the previous season at York as Blues lost 1-0 and was also the official who dismissed Martin Carruthers and Mark Tinkler in a 2-1 defeat to Barnet, when Greg Heald was also sent off.


TEAM FORM


Last Matches


Wednesday 14th January 2004
– F.A. Cup third round replay @ the McCain Stadium

Scarborough 1 (Mark Quayle 83) Southend United 0 [attendance: 4,859]. Southend United line-up (4-4-2): Darryl Flahavan; Duncan Jupp, Leon Cort, Lewis Hunt, Jamie Stuart; Mark Gower (Steven Clark 87), Jay Smith, Kevin Maher, Neil Jenkins (Michael Kightly 90); Tesfaye Bramble (James Corbett 87), Leon Constantine. Subs not used: Ryan Robinson, Mark Warren.


Saturday 10th January 2004
– Nationwide League Third Division @ Belle Vue

Doncaster Rovers 5 (Leo Fortune-West 6, 14, 18, Gregg Blundell 56, Paul Hynes 80) Leyton Orient 0 [attendance: 6,293]. Doncaster Rovers line-up (4-4-2): Andy Warrington; Jamie Price, Mark Albrighton, Steve Foster, Tim Ryan; JJ Melligan (Adriano Migoglioso 77), John Doolan, Paul Green (Ricky Ravenhill 83), Michael McIndoe; Leo Fortune-West (Paul Hynes 71), Gregg Blundell. Subs not used: Barry Richardson, Dave Morley.


Last Five Matches


Southend United

L0-1 (away; Scarborough; F.A. Cup)

D1-1 (away; Cheltenham Town; League Division Three; Drewe Broughton)

D1-1 (home; Scarborough; League Division Three; Jay Smith)

L0-1 (home; Oxford United; League Division Three)

W1-0 (away; Cambridge United; League Division Three; Leon Constantine)


Doncaster
Rovers

W5-0 (home; Leyton Orient; League Division Three; Leo Fortune-West 3, Gregg Blundell, Paul Hynes)

L1-3 (away; Huddersfield Town; League Division Three; Gregg Blundell)

L1-3 (away; Hull City; League Division Three; Leo Fortune-West)

W1-0 (home; Scunthorpe United; League Division Three Gregg Blundell)

W3-1 (home; Swansea City; League Division Three; Michael McIndoe [pen], Paul Green, Gregg Blundell)

Southend United home form

D1-1 (F.A. Cup; Scarborough; Jay Smith)

L0-1 (League Division Three; Oxford United)

L0-1 (League Division Three; Bristol Rovers)

W3-0 (LDV Vans Trophy; Luton Town; Leon Constantine, Michael Kightly, Drewe Broughton)

W3-0 (F.A. Cup; Lincoln City; Tesfaye Bramble, Mark Gower, James Corbett)


Doncaster Rovers away form

L1-3 (League Division Three; Huddersfield Town; Gregg Blundell)

L1-3 (League Division Three; Hull City; Leo Fortune-West)

W3-1 (League Division Three; Cheltenham Town; Michael McIndoe [pen], Dave Morley, JJ Melligan)

W1-0 (League Division Three; Carlisle United; Leo Fortune-West)

L0-1 (League Division Three; York City)


2003/4 SEASON


Southend United

Nationwide League Division Three (overall [home])

Played: 25 [12]

Won: 7 [3]

Drawn: 4 [1]

Lost: 14 [8]

Scored: 23 [11]

Conceded: 38 [16]

Goal Difference: -15 [-5]

Points: 25 [10]

Position: 22nd [23rd]

F.A. Cup

First Round: beat Canvey Island (away) 3-2 in replay after 1-1 draw at home

Second Round: beat Lincoln City (home) 3-0

Third Round: lost to Scarborough (away) 0-1 in replay after 1-1 draw at home

Carling Cup

First Round: lost to Swindon Town (home) 2-3

LDV Vans Trophy

First Round: beat Bristol Rovers (home) 2-1 after silver goal extra time

Second Round: beat Swansea City (away) 2-1

Southern Section Quarter-Final: beat Luton Town (home) 3-0

Southern Section Semi-Final: vs. Queens Park Rangers (home) on Tuesday 20th January 2004


Doncaster
Rovers

Nationwide League Division Three (overall [away])

Played: 26 [13]

Won: 16 [6]

Drawn: 4 [2]

Lost: 6 [5]

Scored: 50 [21]

Conceded: 24 [17]

Goal Difference: +26 [+4]

Points: 52 [20]

Position: 3rd [4th]

F.A. Cup

First Round: lost to Scarborough (away) 0-1

Carling Cup

First Round: beat Grimsby Town (home) 3-2

Second Round: lost to Crystal Palace (away) 1-2

LDV Vans Trophy

First Round: beat Chester City (away) 1-0

Second Round: lost to Blackpool (away) 0-1


THE HISTORY


Last Match


Doncaster Rovers

2-0

(Attendance: 5,592)

Southend United

Steve Foster 12

Carl Emberson [o.g] 55

Nationwide League Division Three @ Belle Vue on Saturday 16th August 2003

Andy Warrington

Simon Marples

Chris Beech

Steve Foster

John Doolan

Paul Green

Tim Ryan

Jamie Paterson

Michael McIndoe

Leo Fortune-West

Gregg Blundell

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-(73)

-(73)

-(90)

-

Carl Emberson

Duncan Jupp
Dave McSweeney

Mark Warren
Leon Cort
Leke Odunsi

Kevin Maher

James Corbett

Mark Gower

Drewe Broughton

Michael Husbands

7

7

6(67)

5

6

6

8

6

6

7

5(78)

Barry Rochardson

Dave Morley

Paul Barnes

Francis Tierney

Ricky Ravenhill

-

-

-(90)

-(73)

-(73)

Ryan Robinson

Tesfaye Bramble

Steven Clark

Che Wilson

Luke Nightingale

-

6(67)

-

-

-(78)


Last Five Meetings


16th August 2003
Doncaster Rovers 2 (Steve Foster 12, Carl Emberson [o.g.] 55) -League Division Three

14th November 1998 – Southend United 0 Doncaster Rovers 1 (Dave Penney 12) – F.A. Cup 1st round

2nd February 1990 – Southend United 2 Doncaster Rovers 0 – League Division Four

22nd September 1989Doncaster Rovers 0 Southend United 1 – League Division Four

2nd May 1988Doncaster Rovers 0 Southend United 1 – League Division Three


The Complete Head-to-Head Record


2003/4 – A0-2 (League)

1998/9 - H0-1 (F.A. Cup)

1989/90 – H2-0 A1-0 (League)

1987/8 – H4-1 A1-0 (League)

1982/3 – H3-2 A0-0 (League)

1981/2 – H1-1 A1-1 (League)

1980/1 – H0-0 A0-1 (League)

1977/8 – H4-0 A0-2 (League)

1976/7 – H2-1 A3-0 (League)

1971/2 – H2-1 A2-0 (League)

1968/9 – H2-0 A0-2 (League)

1967/8 – H1-2 A1-2 (League)

1958/9 – H5-0 A1-2 (League)


Summary


Overall (24 matches)

Southend United 12

Doncaster Rovers 8

Draws 4


In The League (23 matches)

Southend United 12

Doncaster Rovers 7

Draws 4

At Southend United (12 matches)

Southend United 8

Doncaster Rovers 2

Draws 2


Robert Craven
www.thelittlegazette.com