The S24 Preview: Southend United v Stevenage
Updated Thursday, 21st April 2011
It's Good Friday footy at Roots Hall as the play-off contenders the Boro come to south-east Essex for the first time looking for points in a 15.00 kick-off on April, 22nd, 2011.
So to a sunny Bank Holiday afternoon fixture, 21c's and riding, with a team that has been on the sort of run we hoped the Shrimpers might have had before we just plain ran out of steam.
With Bilel Mohsni available again I would expect him to fit straight back in as long as he hasn't pulled anything in training with the old man of the team Graham Coughlan given a rest, then again I've said that before and the former Shrewsbury skipper has stuck a miiddle finger to my preview and gone on to have a storming game.
It would seem Luggy wants to see Luke Prosser more at left-back, as the Roots Hall faithful would do, as the jury is still out on him getting a new contract next season, and as Johnny Herd does not seem to fit into the long term plans of the Blues boss, this would seem to be the best way for the disgarded Port Vale defender to stay on.
Since he has played there we've not let in a goal from a corner, a weakness whatever Luggy said at the AGM, and his height certainly helps, and the score we did let in against the Valiants was a 25-yard screamer.
The real surprise is Lee Sawyer, nobody expected to see him back before next August with his ankle injury, but I'm still putting him on the bench.
Up front it would be good to stick with the Harry and Baz show, with the 6ft 3 top scorer hoping to get that 20th, a real feat and will certainly continue to get the scouts sniffing around, Tranmere Rovers, surely not, and something I didn't see happening back in August, my apologies to Barry Corr.
All in all I see a tight game with the Shrimpers coming out 1-0 winners to stop the great Boro run and give hope to the teams around them.
Possible Southend United: Morris, Clohessy, Mohsni, Barker, Prosser, Ferdinand, Grant, Easton, Hall, Crawford, Corr.
Subs: Evans, Coughlan, Comminges, Sawyer, Soares, Sturrock, Asante.
COME ON YOU BLUES!!!!!
Have your say on whether you want more or less Friday night footy:
Stevenage haven't lost for 8 games when Hereford beat them at home 1-0 on Tuesday, February 8th.
The Herts club have won six on the trot after that, drawing the last two, a run that has put them in to the heart of the play-off race.
Boro boss Graham Westley may give 6-goal striker Byron Harrison and midfielder Stacey Long starts after both came on as subs in the 2-2 draw with Aldershot to give an assist to the final equaliser, (report below), he also scored in the midweek reserve draw with Watford.
Fellow midfielder Michael Bostwick could also return from injury.
They certainly could pack the centre of the park as David Bridges and Joel Byrom are available, along with winger Peter Winn and striker Chris Beardsley.
Westley believes his side need to be more clinical in front of goal following the Shots match.
He told the Press Association after the game: "It keeps the momentum going though I suppose. This run of ours has been an excellent effort from all the players. Where this leaves us for the remainder of the season nobody knows, but we're looking confident and strong and another point is just the job. Both teams have been on decent runs of late so both sets of players will have been full of confidence ahead of the game. We just need to not get too carried away when we're in promising positions. Sometimes we simply gave away possession too easily."
Player to watch:
In a team that not had the strongest striking power of the play-off contenders Mousinho has grabbed the most, a mere 8, from midfield.
He also takes a lot of their set pieces.
Full player info here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Mousinho
Last Time Out
Away; Stockport County 2 Stevenage 2 (played on Saturday, April 9th, 2011.) Report: www.stevenagefc.com/page/MatchReport/0,,10839~52353,00.html
Home; Stevenage 2 Aldershot Town 2 (played on Saturday, April 16th, 2011.)
Report: www.stevenagefc.com/page/MatchReport/0,,10839~52409,00.html Beeb Highlights: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/13111291.stm
Final push for the play-offs
|At Southend Utd. (0)||At Stevenage (2)|
|On Neutral Ground (0)||Overall (2 matches)|
|Southend Utd.||0||0.00||Southend Utd.||1||50.00|
|Southend Utd.||0||0.00||Southend Utd.||5||2.50|
|Highest Aggregate||5||Stevenage B.||1 - 4||Southend Utd.||2001/2002|
|Highest Southend Utd. score:||4||Stevenage B.||1 - 4||Southend Utd.||2001/2002|
|Highest Stevenage score:||1||Stevenage||1 - 1||Southend Utd.||2010/2011|
|2010/2011||Tue 23 Nov||Stevenage||1 - 1||Southend Utd.||League Two|
|2001/2002||Mon 15 Oct||Stevenage B.||1 - 4||Southend Utd.||(Associate Members)|
The man in the middle is David Coote from Nottinghamshire.
And he gives an interview here: http://refworld.com/referee/2248/1/david-coote.
His assistants are Marvin Thompson and Rob Whitton. The fourth official is Adrian Sannerude.
Friday, April 22nd; (all kick-offs 15.00 unless stated); Bury v Lincoln City, Crewe v Morecambe, Southend v Stevenage, Torquay v Wycombe, Northampton v Rotherham, 19.45.
Saturday, April 23rd; (all kick-offs 15.00 unless stated); Hereford v Shrewsbury, 13:00, Accrington Stanley v Bradford, Aldershot v Burton Albion, Cheltenham v Macclesfield, Gillingham v Barnet, Oxford Utd v Chesterfield, Port Vale v Stockport
Monday, April 25th; (all kick-offs 15.00); Barnet v Oxford Utd, Bradford v Aldershot, Burton Albion v Torquay, Chesterfield v Bury, Lincoln City v Cheltenham, Macclesfield v Southend, Morecambe v Hereford, Rotherham v Gillingham, Shrewsbury v Accrington Stanley, Stevenage v Port Vale, Stockport v Northampton, Wycombe v Crewe.
Southend (to win) - 23/10, Draw - 12/5, Stevenage (to win) - 11/8.
For all the footy odds go here: www.oddschecker.com/football/english/league-two/
Stevenage F.C., nicknamed "The Boro", were formed in 1976 following the bankruptcy of Stevenage Athletic.
The club's Broadhall Way pitch was subsequently dug up for non-footballing purposes after the council sold the land to a local businessman. Consequently, the new club started out playing in the Chiltern Youth league on a roped-off pitch at the town's King George V playing fields, and moved up to intermediate status joining the Wallspan Southern Combination shortly after. In 1980 the club moved back to Broadhall Way and the name Borough was added.
With the council as their landlords and a refurbished stadium, Stevenage Borough took on senior status and joined the United Counties Football League in the same year. In their first season as a senior club, the side won the United Counties League Division one championship, Cas well as the United Counties League Cup.
After winning the FA Trophy success in 2007, as well as keeping the majority of the first-team at the club, Stevenage started the 2007-08 season well, breaking a new club record when the defence kept 8 consecutive clean sheets. Stimson was offered a new contract by Stevenage in October 2007, but resigned the following day and subsequently joined Football League club Gillingham. In November 2007, he was replaced by Peter Taylor.
However, after failing to make the play-offs, Taylor resigned at the end of the season and was replaced by former manager Graham Westley. On Westley's return, Stevenage started the season slowly, but went on a 27-game unbeaten run from December to March and reached the play-offs, where they lost in the semi-finals to Cambridge United, 4-3 on aggregate.
The following season, Westley retained the majority of the squad and Stevenage found themselves in first place by New Year's Day. The squad continued to perform well, winning eight consecutive games through February and March , and Stevenage were promoted to the Football League for the first time in the club's history with two games to spare. Promotion was secured thanks to a 2-0 win at Kidderminster Harriers, as Stevenage finished the season 11 points clear at the top of the table.
The club reached the final of the FA Trophy again, but lost to Barrow 2-1 after extra-time, having played seventy minutes of the match with ten men. Shortly after the end of the season, chairman Phil Wallace announced that the club will start its life in the Football League as Stevenage Football Club, dropping the word 'Borough' from its name from 1 June 2010.