Southend United 2 – 0 Stevenage

Both sides came into this match at Roots Hall after defeats in the League Cup, but it was Southend who prevailed to a two-nil victory. Goals from Myles Weston and Ben Coker were enough to see the Shrimpers stroll to a comfortable home victory against a deflated Stevenage side.

The home side began the brightest and after just nine minutes they found themselves a goal up. A long Daniel Bentley kick down-field was flicked on by the towering Barry Corr, which allowed Myles Weston to run onto the ball and place it into the bottom left hand corner of the goal. Calm and composed, the new summer signing at Roots Hall had his first goal for the club. It was just the start Southend boss Phil Brown was looking for, and he would have been even more delighted with his team eleven minutes later when Ben Coker extended Southend’s lead. The left-back advanced up the pitch, played a couple of one-twos on the edge of the box and curled the ball into the far corner with his right foot.

The next two big chances of the game fell to the visitors. Firstly, Adam Marriott saw his close range shot terrifically saved by Bentley, which was followed up by another superb stop from the young keeper as he saved a Chris Whelpdale shot. Marriott, this time turning provider, played through the former Gillingham winger but Bentley stood in his way. Going into half-time, it was evident that Southend fully deserved their two goal advantage.

The second 45 minutes consisted of not many chances, as a result of the game’s tempo slowing down. Barry Corr supposedly had the best opportunities of the half but Sam Beasant, the Stevenage stopper, was able to save the efforts fairly easily, keeping the scoreline at two-nil. Chris Sarginson, the match official, called time on the game, leaving Southend with a clean sheet and 3 valuable points.

Southend United

Daniel Bentley Made two crucial saves in the first half to keep the scoreline at two-nil. Was not called into action in the second half but he did command his box well. Distribution was good as he was involved in the first goal. 7.5
John White The Southend captain did what was required of him. Played his part in keeping the clean sheet. 6
Cian Bolger Solid performance from the former Bolton man, he was dominant in the air whilst keeping the Stevenage players quiet. Although, his clearances weren’t always the best. 7
Luke Prosser Didn’t put a foot wrong all game. Like his defensive partner, Bolger, he won many aerial duels whilst also winning many tackles. 8
Ben Coker Scored his first goal from open play in a Southend shirt, he took it well after good link up play with Barry Corr. He was a constant threat down the left side but also managed to put a good defensive display. 8.5
Kevan Hurst Was probably the quietest of the Southend starting eleven but didn’t do much wrong. 6
Conor Clifford The former Chelsea youngster was superb in the middle of the park, got his tackles in and his passing was accurate. He managed to play a couple of good balls to the wings. Went on a great run towards the end of the game where he laid in Shaquille Coulthirst but the finish was poor. Booked. 7.5
Ryan Leonard Southend’s player of the season last year put up a good fight, contributing to the win with good tackles and powerful surging runs. 6.5
Shaquille Coulthirst Looked impressive at times with his trickery and pace but the Tottenham loanee lacked real conviction in his finishing. Booked. 6
Myles Weston Managed to score his first goal in Southend colours. He was always threatening the Stevenage backline with his pace and runs off the ball. 7.5
Barry Corr Apart from his two assists he didn’t do much. He was sometimes a handful for the two Stevenage center-backs with his height. 7

Substitutions

David Worrall Came on for Hurst after 74 minutes but didn’t do anything to warrant a real rating. 5
Lee Barnard He replaced Coulthirst after 81 minutes but like Worrall he didn’t do anything with real significance to the match. 5

Stevenage

Sam Beasant The newbie goalkeeper at Stevenage couldn’t really have done anything for the two Southend goals. His kicking was not the best and he nearly gifted a goal to Southend after a poor pass out from the back. Fortunately for Beasant, Southend failed to punish him. 5.5
Jon Ashton The Stevenage captain had to move to center-back after 15 minutes, where he played okay. He dealt with Corr at times. 5.5
Dean Wells Apart from the first 20 minutes, where he was quite poor and could have defended better, he grew into the game but not enough to make up for his woeful start. 5.5
Harry Worley Only lasted 15 minutes because he picked up an injury; not really noticeable in the time he had on the pitch. 5
Bira Dembele A really poor game from the French full back and he was subbed off on the 75th minute. He seemed to be all over the place and not the best with the ball at his feet. Booked. 4.5
Tom Pett On just his second Football League game he seemed to be fairly confident and was one of the very few Boro players who stood out. 6.5
Charlie Lee As a result of Worley’s injury he had to fill in at right-back. Despite this he was fairly assured in his play. He won a few aerial duels but he played a couple of long hopeful balls up the pitch. Booked. 6
Simon Walton It was more or less a debut to forget for Walton. He was off the pace and didn’t really impress. 5
Chris Whelpdale He got the winner for Stevenage against Hartlepool the other weekend but he was quiet today. However, he did have some good spells where he put in a couple of good crosses. Possibly should have scored. 6
Darius Charles He was non-existent in the game. Seemed really quiet. 5
Adam Marriott One of Stevenage’s better players but he should have scored from six yards out as he seemed to blast it at Southend’s ‘keeper. He was also unlucky not to get an assist when Whelpdale’s shot was saved. For the rest of the game he looked lively but not enough for Stevenage to get something from the game. 6.5

Substitutions

Andy Bond Came on for the injured Worley, did his job but nothing really exciting from the former Colchester United midfielder. He ended up playing most of the game. 6
Roarie Deacon He came on for Pett but had little impact. 5.5
Jerome Okimo He replaced the disappointing Dembele but like Deacon he didn’t galvanise the Stevenage side. 5

Man of the Match

Ben Coker A game to remember for the Southend lef-back, scored a great goal, and put a solid defensive performance in. His play with Coulthirst on the left wing was fantastic. Southend fans will be hoping for more of the same from Coker in the future. 8.5

 


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