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Southend to field strongest side of the season against high-flying Henley
SOUTHEND’s director of rugby Chris Green feels he will be selecting his strongest side of the season so far at Henley tomorrow.
New signings Sam Arnott and Mike Stanley both look set to make their first starts since rejoining the club.
And, with Lee Guess, Andrew Frost and Liam MacGeachy all available again, Green is certain the Seasiders are now a much better team.
“We’re going in to 2013 with renewed optimism and tomorrow will most definitely be the strongest starting line-up we have had this season,” said Green.
“Sam and Mike coming back has given everyone a huge boost because we know they’re quality players and we also have others coming back from injury and suspension.
“That will make a huge difference and hopefully that will be reflected in the level of our performance.”
Southend certainly need an upturn in fortune too as they have suffered defeats in their last five games.
That has seen them slump to second from bottom in the National Two standings.
And Green knows it will be another tough test against Henley, who are currently fourth in the table.
“For me Henley are the best team we have played so far this season so it will be incredibly difficult going there, “said Green.
“They put 60 points on us at our place when we played them in September and have been top for most of the season.
“Since the weather started to turn a little bit their results haven’t been quite so good but they’re still right up there going for promotion.
“Despite that it’s a game we’re looking forward to and we want to show how much we’ve improved since we played them before.”
The match will also be Southend’s first since mid-December and Green insists the players cannot wait to get back in action.
“We’ve had them in training and everyone just wants to get out and play,” said Green.
“It seems like ages since we had a match and hopefully we can continue the improvements we were making before Christmas with another good performance.”