Ahead of tonight’s game, Southend United manager Mark Molesley had plenty of positives to say about opponents Forest Green Rovers, stating that he has “the utmost respect” for them.

That respect is justified, too, following the start Rovers have made to the League Two campaign. Mark Cooper’s side currently sit as high as fifth, therefore in the playoff places, with 22 points to their name.

By some contrast, Southend sit rock bottom on five points having won just once so far this season. The Shrimpers enter the game on somewhat of a high, however, after securing their first three points and clean sheet of the season last time out against Walsall.

With injuries mounting alongside players missing due to COVID-19, the Blues will have it all to do at Roots Hall. The depleted squad will need to remain resilient amid uncertain times at the club.

But, the fact is, the task at hand in tonight’s game looks impossible when considering the lack of availability, coinciding with a lack of form, within the Shrimpers’ ranks.

Molesley, previewing the game, stated the difficulty of the challenge posed of his side tonight, as per their official club website: “It’s going to be a tough challenge. I’ve got the utmost respect for Forest Green. They play a lovely brand of football. A very good side in possession so we’ve got to be at our very best, as we have to every week.”

 He then added: “There’s some big challenges but we should be in confident mood that we showed a good performance and got a win and clean sheet in our last game. There’s something to build on for ourselves.”

Southend midfielder James Olayinka is facing a late fitness test, as per The72.