Brown - We Have To Be At Our Best
Manager Phil Brown has said that Southend simply must be at their best when we face Rochdale on Friday evening.
As we look to bounce back from the defeat to Wimbledon in our last game, Brown has told the Official Site that just like our game against Rochdale earlier in the season where he feels they caught us at a good time, he feels that we are playing them at the right time this time round when it comes to our Good Friday clash later tonight.
'I think earlier in the season, Rochdale caught us at a good time because we'd just had our first defeat in about nine games, losing at Torquay. Maybe we're catching them at the right time too because they've not won for three games and haven't got a goal in that time either.'
Rochdale do have the best home record in the division and have led the table for quite a while this campaign after replacing Scunthorpe at the top, before they then won the position back in recent weeks given their dip, but even if we are playing them at the right time, it is still going to be a tough test and Brown acknowledges that by adding.
'I'm not saying it's a great time, because they are a very good side, but hopefully we can use it to our advantage on Friday and frustrate them before building on a solid defensive base.'
The gaffer knows that there are pressures on both teams. We are obviously vying to secure a play off spot, whilst they will no doubt quite like the No 1 spot back so it should be a good encounter with us both fighting at the right end of the division, but he thinks the pressure is 'good' as opposed to the 'bad' pressure when you are fighting for survival, so rather than a scrappy battle of a game, he thinks it will push both sides to a relatively open encounter that will be good to watch for the fans and for the neutral.