GARY Deegan is desperate to make his Southend United debut at AFC Wimbledon tonight.

The 25-year-old was recently snapped up on a three month contract by Shrimpers boss Phil Brown.

And the midfielder hopes to be included in the starting line-up for the first time in this evening’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy first round tie.

“I’m ready to jump at the chance and show what I can do if I’m given the chance to play,” said Deegan.

“It’s the gaffer’s call but I played in the behind closed doors against Oxford the other day and I’m feeling good.

“I’m fit and confident and hopefully I can make my debut this evening.”

Deegan was selected among the substitutes for Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Plymouth Argyle.

And he was impressed by how Blues battled with 10 men after having Cian Bolger sent off after just 15 minutes at Home Park.

“The lads worked really hard on Saturday but it was always going to be difficult when we went down to 10 men,” said Deegan.

“We played well in the first half and were probably unlucky not to get a goal but they were able to take advantage in the second-half.”

Blues will therefore be hoping to get back to winning ways tonight.

And they will also be seeking revenge on the Dons who beat them 1-0 at Roots Hall just a fortnight ago.

“AFC Wimbledon did a job on us at Roots Hall a couple of weeks ago, I was there watching the game and we were unlucky not to win,” said Deegan.

“Hopefully tonight it will be a different story and I can help in that happening.

“I want to impress in the time I have here, both in the matches and in training and hopefully my first chance will come tonight.”