Southend United manager Phil Brown: Freddy Eastwood still has huge part to play in our season

Echo: Freddy Eastwood - still has a big part to play for Southend United, according to manager Ph Freddy Eastwood - still has a big part to play for Southend United, according to manager Ph

I HAD a good chat with Freddy Eastwood at the training ground yesterday and we are both still very much on the same page.

I know I decided to bring on both Lee Barnard and Cauley Woodrow ahead of him at Dagenham & Redbridge on Tuesday night but Freddy still has a big part to play in our season.

Cauley has obviously gone back to Fulham now so chances will certainly be coming Freddy’s way and he’s really fired up to take them.

He was disappointed not to get on at Dagenham which I fully understand but he’s desperate to be involved again and I’m sure he will be soon because we saw at the start of the season what he is capable of producing.

I’ve also had time to watch the DVD of the Dagenham & Redbridge game with my backroom team and I actually think the opening 30 minutes was our best spell of the game.

Unfortunately we couldn’t make the breakthrough during that time but when we finally did go in front, from Kevan Hurst, I thought we would go on to win the game.

Dagenham’s record when conceding first isn’t the best and we had another good spell when 1-0 up when we could maybe have scored a second.

It wasn’t to be and, after Dagenham equalised, both teams could have won it at the end.

It was like a boxing match with both teams really going for it so a draw was probably about fair in the end.

OUR FANS WERE FANTASTIC AT DAGENHAM AND SO WERE THE WALKERS

OUR fans were absolutely fantastic at Dagenham & Redbridge and to have 50 per cent of the crowd when you’re away from home is unbelievable.

We had 1,300 there and it actually made me chuckle a little bit when the attendance was right out and it became apparent there Dagenham had just 12 more fans than us.

One end of the ground look like the Premier League and the other end looked like non-league but thankfully it was our fans that packed the end they were in.

Some of the fans from the Shrimpers Trust even walked to the ground and I take my hat off to every single one of them.

The weather was shocking and the conditions can’t have been kind so a huge well done to all of them for being able to complete the 29 miles.

As a group we’re in the process of making a donation to the Trust and I hope they raised a good amount of money for the stroke unit at Southend Hospital.

I first dealt with the Trust on the way to our game at Exeter and, at that time, we were in dire need of improving our facilities.

We needed jump mats, a punch bag and new scales and the Trust were able to come up with the £500 we needed to get them which I still greatly appreciate.

JUAN MATA MOVE GREAT FOR BOTH CHELSEA & MAN UNITED

JUAN Mata’s move from Chelsea to Manchester United is a great deal for both clubs in my opinion.

Chelsea have got £37 million and United have got a player who is tried and tested in the Premier League.

He’s not a Spaniard who is coming over trying to impress because he’s a proven quality player.

With Robin Van Persie, Wayne Rooney and him in the same side I think the rest of the side might want to get their own football because they won’t be getting it off them.

But I still Manchester United are a force and if those three stay fit then I think they will finish in the Champions League places come the end of the season.

FULL COLUMN IN THURSDAY'S ECHO

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