Concord Rangers beat a youthful Southend United side 3-0 in a pre-season friendly at Thames Road.
This report will not mention Concord Rangers players names due to the club keeping personal a secret as they have an upcoming semi-final.
Story of the game:
The Beach Boys got off to the perfect start scoring within the opening two minutes, but it was courtesy of Southend fullback Ide Osimeh giving the ball away on the edge the box. Despite the ball falling in a favourable position for the Concord player, he did extremely well to finish, volleying the ball in from outside of the area.
It was not long before Concord scored their second and third, tripling their lead within just twelve minutes. The same Beach Boys player scoring twice in quick succession meant that the Shrimpers were facing a gruelling remaining 75 minutes.
The Blues tried to get back into the game, a long-range effort from Eren Kinali and a back-post header from Emile Acquah forced the Concord keeper into making some saves, but they were attempts that were never going to find the back of the net.
Acquah did come extremely close to opening for the Blues in the 23th minute. A well directed header just glimpsed past the far post following an accurate Isaac Hutchinson cross.
Kinali was denied by the Concord keeper for a second time as his low shot was parried away due to an acrobatic dive.
As the halftime whistle blew, Southend entered the changing room with a lot of work to do. A half deprived of clear-cut chances paired with a lack of meaningful possession left manager Mark Molesley with a lot to sort out entering the second half.
The Blues came out in the second half looking revitalised, piling on some early pressure within the opening five minutes.
Captain Charlie Kelman was a little more involved in procedures, dropping deeper to receive the ball. This change helped create a chance just 47 minutes in, but it quickly fizzled out to a goal kick.
Possession without creating chances quickly became a theme of the game for Molesley’s men as a combination of poor movement and uninspiring passes equated to a frustrating watch.
The best chance of the game for Southend did come in the 67th minute however, as Hutchinson’s placed effort was sensationally blocked off the line by a Concord defender.
Molesley eventually decided to change personnel, making seven substitutions in the 74th minute. Right back Elvis Bmwomono was the most recognisable of the arriving players as the 21-year-old took the captains armband from Kelman.
There were a few calls for a penalty in the 79th minute as substitute Brandon Goodship was bundled over in the box, but any hope of a spot kick was quickly dismissed by the referee.
New loan signing Jorden Green’s right footed strike dribbled just wide of the post minutes before half time, and it was a shot that summarised the Blues second half well. It was ok, but probably should have been a lot better.
As the full-time whistle went the Concord players raised their head high knowing that they had completed their task ahead of a massively important fixture this Saturday.
As we cannot name Concord players, controversially I will have to name a Southend player man of the match.
There were not many players who deserved much praise, but centre back Harry Kyprianou did look one of the sharpest.
The Cypriot international has had a torrid time with injuries recently, and a confident performance boded well for his future at Southend.
Honourable mention goes to Charlie Kelman who consistently tried as hard off the ball as he did on it.
Unfortunately however, it was a day to forget for Southend United.