FREDDY Eastwood will say farewell to Southend United tonight, but has yet to decide whether or not he will play in the Shrimpers’ pre-season friendly with Ipswich Town.
Eastwood, who enjoyed two separate spells at Roots Hall, was released by Blues boss Phil Brown at the end of last season.
But he will return for this evening’s friendly with the Tractor Boys.
“It’s great that I’ve been given this chance to come back and say goodbye to the fans and everyone at the club and I’m looking forward to it,” said Eastwood, 30.
“I honestly don’t know whether or not I’m going to be playing at any stage of the game and it’s something I still need to talk to the manager about.
“But I will definitely be there and it will a good night because virtually all of my happiest memories from football are with Southend.”
Eastwood was a big success during his first stint with the Shrimpers and played a huge part in them securing two successive promotions to reach the Championship.
He became a firm favourite with the fans and also fired home a fantastic free-kick to help Blues secure arguably their most famous ever victory, a 1-0 win against Manchester United in the League Cup back in 2006.
In total he scored 75 goals in 210 games for the Shrimpers to sit fifth in the club’s all time list of goalscorers.
And his former Southend manager Steve Tilson feels Eastwood is up there with the best players to have ever lined up for the club.
“Freddy was different class for me when we got those two promotions and had a lot of success,” said Tilson.
“His goalscoring record was fantastic and he was so exciting to watch, which is why the fans loved him.
“I’m not sure why things didn’t go so well for him when he left or when he came back but I’m sure he will always be remembered fondly by the supporters.
“And during those few seasons he had I’m sure he would be up there with some of the best players Southend have ever had.”
Eastwood was troubled by a knee injury towards the end of his time with Blues and has yet to decide if he will continue playing next season.