A BELOW-PAR Southend United crashed out of the Checkatrade Trophy tonight – losing 2-0 at Peterborough United.

The Shrimpers came into the second round clash unbeaten in their last three outings.

But a side which contained six changes from Saturday’s win against Oldham Athletic rarely threatened Posh who comfortably triumphed in the second round clash despite ending the tie with just men.

Blues looked most dangerous in the opening exchanges with the recalled Michael Timlin dragging a low, left footed shot across the face of goal before teenage frontman Amadou Ba saw his 20 yard shot smothered by Posh goalkeeper Jonathan Bond.

Moments later, Posh replied with Jack Marriott sending a deflected effort wide of the left post before the hosts opened the scoring in the 16th minute, with Gwion Edwards on target.

The Welshmen nipped in ahead of Jason Demetriou to reach a Marcus Maddison pass - which went in behind the Blues back four - and strode forward to fire past the advancing Blues shot-stopper Mark Oxley.

Oxley then did well to parry away a well-struck shot from Maddison before Blues came close to netting a spectacular equaliser when Demetriou’s 35 yard shot was tipped over the crossbar by Bond.

After surviving the scare, Posh soon wasted a golden opportunity to double the scoring when Maddison’s right wing cross picked out an unmarked Jermaine Anderson only for the midfielder to somehow send his shot wide of the left post from six yards.

Blues immediately replied with Jermaine McGlashan sending a low effort straight at Bond from a narrow angle in the closing action of the first half.

After the break, Peterborough striker Jack Marriott saw a well struck left footed shot impressively pushed onto the top of the left post by Oxley before Anderson saw a close range header ruled out for offside.

The Shrimpers were then also left feeling frustrated on the hour mark when Josh Wright’s header from McGlashan’s left wing cross bounced back off the left post.

A minute later, Blues boss Phil Brown made his first change of the night with Theo Robinson replacing Ba in attack.

But, with 62 minutes on the clock, Posh doubled their lead as Maddison cut in from the right flank and sent an accurate effort into the bottom left hand corner of the net.

Brown responded by replacing Anthony Wordsworth with Stephen McLaughlin but Posh remained on top with Oxley doing well to deny Maddison and Edwards in quick succession.

Edwards then had another effort cleared off the goal-line by Demetriou before Blues made their final change of the night in the 75th minute with Simon Cox replacing McGlashan.

The Shrimpers' hopes were boosted when Posh duo Leo Da Silva Lopes and Ryan Tafazolli both going off injured to leave the hosts with just nine men.

But Blues were unable to make their extra men count during eight minutes of stoppage time with Ranger hitting the underside of the crossbar from close range.