The Preview: Accrington Stanley v Southend
The heartache of last season's League 2 play off setback seems such a long time ago now, but at the same time seems like only yesterday! That's been and gone though and the focus is now on Accrington Stanley with us starting the season away to them on Saturday.
Will Hatfield collected a knock in pre season but he's the only doubt that Accrington Stanley have so former England international James Beattie will be happy with the options that he's got available to him.
Debuts aplenty could come our way with Cian Bolger, Shaquile Coulthirst, Mads Ibenfeldt, Myles Weston and David Worrall all in line to turn out for Southend for the first time in a competitive game. Lee Barnard technically will make another debut for us after signing permanently over the summer after his loan last season. Luke Prosser's injury problems, all being well, are behind him but Michael Timlin's continue.
Pre season's been good to us and the injury front isn't bad either, with the 'grass being green' at the Crown Ground Phil Brown feels it's a good time for us to be facing our opponents and I think he's right. If we play like we know we can we'll start the season impressively as we did last time but we'll want a much better middle section this time!