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Southend United's Phil Brown: Chesterfield present a true footballing test
3:00pm Thursday 22nd August 2013 in Sport
I THINK Chesterfield were the pre-season favourites to win League Two this year and I would think they still are, so it will be a stern test for us against them on Saturday.
We’ve had different tests and challenges in the four matches we’ve played so far this season.
But, with the way Chesterfield play, I think this weekend will very much be a footballing test and one we will be looking to pass.
We will obviously be going there full of confidence after another good win against Northampton Town.
That game was very much a physical test, and we came out on top because we didn’t let them bully us.
The red card made it difficult for them, but playing against 10 men isn’t easy and it was great to see us come out on top.
We’ve now won all three league games, which is very pleasing, but I was always confident we would get off to a good start.
The time I was slightly concerned was when we were 2-0 down at Great Wakering Rovers in our first pre-season game and I was stood there thinking how far short we were.
But we came back to win 3-2 when some of our big hitters came on and I was also pleased by how we responded to going a goal down in Madrid.
Their goal came quite early on and we were playing in 40 degree heat but I learnt an awful lot about the players that day.
We came back well to draw 1-1 and I think it was then that I thought we were well set to do well.
But I also knew if that was going to happen then we would have to ride our luck with injuries and suspensions.
Having lost Julian Bennett to a long term injury, it was therefore disappointing to also lose Marc Laird.
He will be out for up to two months but it’s now time for people like Conor Clifford and Michael Timlin to step up.
In an ideal world, I’d like to have two players for every position, which means four centre backs and four wingers.
Unfortunately we don’t have that, but we’re still able to fill a round hole with a round peg.
Mark Phillips is also still an injury doubt and he’s still very up and down with the groin problem he has.
Some days he’s very close to playing again and at other times he seems to be a million miles away.
But Adam Thompson did very well when he came in against Northampton and that’s exactly the type of competition we want at the club.
CHELSEA MY TIP FOR PREMIER LEAGUE TITLE
I WAS in the Sky Sports studios for Chelsea’s opening game of the season with Hull City and I thought they were very impressive indeed for the opening 25 minutes.
They went two goals up and, just like Jose Mourinho’s team can do, they sat back on that, but they certainly have the talent going forward to be able to win games by more.
David Moyes got off to a great start with Manchester United, winning 4-1 at Swansea and I thought Manchester City cruised to victory over Newcastle, who seem to have a few problems right now.
Tottenham and Liverpool also got off to winning ways and Liverpool are my dark horses as an outsider this season.
But if I had to pick now who I thought would win the league, then I would pick Chelsea.
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