The Southend view

Dec 8, 2019 | News

Southend United manager Sol Campbell was left fuming following the Shrimpers’ 4-2 defeat at Bristol Rovers.

Blues dominated the first half and led 2-0 at the break but Rovers fought back in the second half to leave Campbell frustrated at the final whistle.

“It’s extremely difficult to take,” said Campbell. “We had a fantastic first half but I told them at half-time the game wasn’t done. We had to keep doing the same things but we didn’t. “Players weren’t getting back into position and not busting a gut. They do what they want.”

Rovers – who are managed by former Blues coach Graham Coughlan – scored four times without reply in the second half. And Campbell felt his side could have thought the game was already over.

“Maybe some of the players thought the game was done and finished,” said the former England international. “We have to recognise we need to fight for every inch of the pitch and be in the position.  You could understand it after 85 minutes but not 10 seconds into the second half.”

However, Campbell also felt the warning signs had been there before Rovers netted. “Even before the break things were happening,” said Campbell. “(Nathan) Bishop picked up the ball and it’s like what are we doing, are we concentrating? “As players you have to concentrate. It was an amazing first half and we’ve let it slip.”

And Campbell continued to bemoan a lack of positional sense. “For the penalty we aren’t in the right position,” said the 45-year-old. “If you’re not in the right position then these things can happen. “We don’t want to get into position, to get in where it hurts or to keep running.

“I’m disappointed because we chucked an amazing first half out the window. “We might as well have lost 4-0.

“We could have gone on and won the game but we stopped doing what we did in the first half. “I don’t know what world they are living in.”

“I’m sick to the core and it hurts me,” said Campbell. “We had the chances to kill the game off and then in the second half everything good we did in the first we’ve chucked out the window.”