MORE than 300 Southend United fans gathered to express their anger ahead of this afternoon’s game with Newport County.

Blues will be lining up in the National League next season after suffering back to back relegations.


Calling for change - frustrated Southend United supporters

And lifelong fan Lee Jarvis was among those to express his frustration.

“We want and need change and we’re fed up with it now as we’ve seen things getting worse and worse,” said Jarvis.

“I don’t see Ron (Martin) going anywhere but something does need to change.

“We need someone to come in, maybe as a joint venture.

“Ron hasn’t got the money to invest in the squad anymore and you can see that with the squad we’ve had.

“It’s heartbreaking to see what’s happening.”


United - fans gathered in the main car park at Roots Hall

Fans chanted in the main car park at Roots Hall before a section of the supporters also walked round to behind the North Bank.

And passionate supporter James Schooley has been saddened by the Shrimpers' struggles.

"This is our lowest ever ebb," said Schooley. 

"The common theme is the mismanagement of the club.

"In desperation to get the stadium pushed through, the eye has been taken off the ball on the football side of things.

"It just seems to have been one bad decision after another.

"We need a manager signed up now, we need to draw up a shortlist of players and ensuring a budget and a framework is in place to get us through next season without any HMRC issues.


Making their feelings known - Southend United supporters

"But the main message today is that we need a change. Whether that's under Ron Martin or someone else it needs to happen.

Blues finished the season sitting second from bottom as their 101 year long stay in the Football League came to an end.

And Owen Jones was another Blues fan saddened by the club's situation.

"In the past three seasons we've been going further and further down," said Jones.

"Ron is going to have to admit he's made mistakes and make some changes.

"I think it's unrealistic to say we will get out of the National League at the first attempt although I obviously hope we can.

"I do really hope we can come back from this and have some good times again but I'll be here whatever next season."


Message - a young fan brought a banner to the ground

And those sentiments were echoed by Max Stapleton.

"I've supported this club ever since I've been alive and something needs to happen because we can't keep going on like this," said Stapleton.

"I don't think Ron knows how to run the club and it's all well and good talking about a new CEO but if you don't have the money to keep the club alive then what's the point?."

Shrimpers boss Phil Brown again brought the matchday squad out to applaud supporters before the match while chairman Martin also went out to address the fans with a megaphone.

Martin spoke to supporters just before this afternoon's 1-1 match with Newport County got underway.

And, in a short recording heard by Echosport, he said: "There's a lot of hard work to be done and we need your support. Leave it with us and we will rebuild this club."