SOUTHEND United manager Steve Tilson is hoping to celebrate his 200th game in charge of the Shrimpers in style this evening.

The Blues boss, who will become just the eighth man to reach the landmark, is hoping to see off Cheltenham Town in the opening round of the Carling Cup at Roots Hall.

And he is keen to see a reaction from his side's after Saturday's 2-1 defeat to Leyton Orient.

"After what happened at the weekend we want a win," said the popular Tilson, who is now 41.

"We want to bounce back from losing to Orient and it would be the perfect way to celebrate my 200th game as manager."

But as Blues bid for a second round slot they will be missing influential midfielder Alan McCormack as he serves a one match suspension following his red card against the O's.

Skipper Kevin Maher (foot) is also expected to miss out, while Matt Harrold (calf) faces a late fitness test.

Goalkeeper Darryl Flahavan (groin) should be available though and Tilson is hoping the breaks will soon start going the way of the Shrimpers.

"The performance wasn't actually that bad at the weekend, we just didn't get that little bit of luck you need," he said.

"Hopefully that will change and it would be nice to get going on another cup run."

Southend reached the quarter finals last season, memorably beating Manchester United before narrowly losing 1-0 after extra time at Tottenham Hotspur.

Despite that record, Tilson will not take Cheltenham lightly.

"They had a great win at the weekend beating Gillingham 1-0 so they will be coming here full of confidence," said Tilson.

"They've got off to a good start and will be looking to keep it going but we're at home and will be looking for the win."

Tilson should hand Nicky Bailey his first Southend start in centre of midfield, alongside Franck Moussa, while Charlie MacDonald could start up front.

Southend (from): Flahavan, Gilbert, Clarke, Barrett, Wilson, Campbell-Ryce, Moussa, Bailey, Gower, MacDonald, Hooper, Harrold, Richards, Black, Collis, Bradbury and Hunt.