The Return of Phil Brown at Roots Hall
By Tommy Miller
Three years on and Phil Brown has returned to Roots Hall in a surprising announcement last week. With no news of a new manger imminent on the south coast all changed in quick fashion with Mark Molesley leaving and Brown back in the dugout.
Southend sit 23rd in the EFL League 2 table four points off safety with five games to play. So, there is no surprise a new manager has been brought in to help save the shrimpers but was the change too late to do anything about the inevitable relegation to non-league. Fans still hope of a miracle survival escape and a point this weekend in Phil Browns first game back closed the gap to Colchester. However, a win was badly needed with a point looking like the gaps going to be just too big to close. Exeter awaits Brown’s men next off which will be a tricky affair with Exeter looking to make the play-offs. A win is pivotal for Southend to spark an escape, but the lack of goals is extremely worrying.
Brown’s major task is to get this team to score goals with clean sheets not being an issue for this Southend team but scoring goals is one that has haunted them all season. Southend’s top scorer after 41 games only sits on three the worst in the league by a long stretch. This lack of goal threat has led to Southend being in the situation of fighting for relegation. With five games reaming Southend and Brown need to find goals quick and start picking up points to put those above them under pressure.
Back in Phil Brown’s first spell in charge of Southend the atmosphere and feel around the club was much better with a promotion like no other from League 2, and then a season that got them so close to the League 1 playoffs. Southend fans will never forget the Wembley day out Phil Brown gave them as Joe Pigott scored in the 124th minute to send the game to penalties where hero Daniel Bentley sent them into ecstasy. Although this time round it won’t be the same, if Brown can save Southend as a football league club then the fans will be just as delighted as they pray their club can survive.
Can Phil Brown put himself further into the Southend history books and pull off the great escape?