It's five years since Southend were last in the third tier of English football and, under current manager Phil Brown, there is a real belief that they can push on from where they are.In fact it's only eight years since they were competing in the second tier and beating Manchester United in the League Cup. So after a strong campaign last season, fans believe the club can kick on and at least cement their place in League One.
Last season was a real roller coaster ride for Brown and his side, with them narrowly missing out on automatic promotion, it meant they had to endure the play-offs if they were to return to League One. Having put Stevenage out after extra time, it then came down to a two team shootout at Wembley against Wycombe Wanderers. Ironically, it was just that, a Shootout that would decide who would be playing their football where next season. That wasn't half the story though as Brown's men were seconds from going out. Luckily enough Joe Piggot scored a stoppage time equaliser which enabled United to get to the shootout and emerge victorious.
The Shrimpers haven't been frantic in the transfer market so far this summer, they've made a few additions to their squad, with striker David Mooney arriving from Leyton Orient and Anthony Wordsworth joining from Ipswich Town. Although, they may only have added two players, the two Brown has added have real pedigree and experience at this level and higher, Mooney scored goals for fun a couple of seasons ago for Orient and Wordsworth featured consistently for Colchester, making 177 appearances before moving on to Ipswich.
In Brown, Southend have someone who has managed at the very top of the game with Hull and he certainly doesn't lack charisma or confidence in his own ability. How could anyone forget that half time team talk on the pitch at Eastlands? Besides that though, Southend have an experienced manager and his knowledge of the game will be invaluable as United look to climb up the leagues once more.