LEON Cort is back at Southend United on trial.

The 34-year-old made 161 appearances for the Shrimpers before departing at the end of the 2003/04 season.

But the centre back has now returned to Roots Hall and looks set to line up for Blues in their pre-season friendly at Braintree Town tomorrow.

Cort left Southend to join Hull City and then also spent time with Crystal Palace, Stoke City and Burnley.

The former Millwall trainee also played on loan for Preston North End and was with Charlton Athletic in the Championship last season, playing five times.

Cort has now made 462 career appearances and is currently available on a free transfer.

Southend are also desperately short of centre-backs after missing out on signing loan duo John Egan and Jakub Sokolik who ended last season on loan at the club.