SOUTHEND United have suffered a double injury blow ahead of tomorrow’s trip to York City with both Luke Prosser and Luke O’Neill facing extended spells on the sidelines.
Scans have now shown that centre-back Prosser faces at least another fortnight out of action with a calf strain while on loan right-back O’Neill has returned to Burnley after his thigh problem was found to be more serious than first thought.
And that has disappointed Shrimpers boss Phil Brown.
“It’s bad news on them both and it’s frustrating for us to say the very least,” said the Blues boss.
“Pross is an important player for us and I think we’re missing him at the moment so to be without him for another couple of weeks is not what we wanted.
“We also wanted to extend Luke O’Neill’s loan but he’s looking at even longer out of action that we thought so that’s gone down by the wayside now.
“It’s something we might look at doing at a later stage but things like this happen in football all the time and you just have to carry on with what you’ve got.”
Blues will be doing that this weekend at York as they bid to end a run of six games without a win.
The run of indifferent results has seen the Shrimpers slip down to seventh in the League Two table, six points behind the automatic promotion places.
However, Brown was buoyed by his side’s performance in their 1-1 draw against Hartlepool United on Tuesday night.
And he hopes to see a similar display when Blues do battle with 11th placed York tomorrow.
“If our energy levels can stay that high then we won’t be having any qualms about our results for much longer,” said Brown.
“We won’t be making many changes to the team because we’re ready to go again but York have done well in their last few games and we’re in for a very difficult afternoon against them.
“We we certainly need to do better than we did there last season but it should be a good pitch there and we’re looking forward to the game.”