SOUTHEND United manager Chris Powell felt his side’s tough training regime took its toll during the 1-1 draw with Aberdeen’s development team.

Amadou Ba’s opener for the Shrimpers was cancelled out by a second half strike from Ethan Ross at the Oliva Nova resort in Spain.

But Powell took plenty of positives from the clash which was played in scorching sunshine.

“It was a good test for us,” said the Blues boss.

“Scottish teams compete and their attitude is always first class.

"Paul (Sheerin) brought across a really competitive squad and I knew it would be tough because we’ve worked the players hard.

"We’ve had two very hard days because it’s a training camp and we knew that might show in the game.

"We went 1-0 up and won the first half if you like and there were some good things going on.

"But in the second half we looked leggy and looked as though the work we’ve been doing had caught up with us.

"It was a poor goal we gave away by our standards but overall it was a good work-out."

The Shrimpers opened the scoring when Ba headed home after Stephen McLaughlin's effort had been well saved by Aberdeen goalkeeper David Craddock.

And Powell was pleased to see the young Frenchman on target.

"Because Amadou was signed I think people think he’s this experienced Frenchman but he’s still very young," said Powell.

"He’s only 19 or 20 but he’s shown some good things in pre-season which is what you want.

"You want people to impress and show they mean business.

"The majority of players have done that but one or two haven’t.

"That’s why we have five or six weeks to get ready but I’m pleased for Amadou and it’s good for him to get off the mark."

Blues had earlier come close to taking the lead when Renei Batlokwa fired inches wide of the right post after the midfielder had created the chance with an impressive piece of skill.

And, following Ba's effort, the Shrimpers almost doubled their lead when Timothee Dieng headed McLaughlin's left wing corner against the crossbar.

Blues made 11 changes at the break and the new look side threatened early on when Sam Barratt cut in off the left flank and saw his shot blocked by the legs of the keeper.

Moments later, Michael Kightly curled a low left foot shot against the outside of the left post.

But, after surviving the scares, Aberdeen soon fought back with an unmarked Millo Virtagen heading wide from close range.

However, the Scottish side were not to be denied for long, with Ross on target 15 minutes from time.

The striker was played through on goal after Michael Turner had been dispossessed while under pressure trying to deal with a pass from Harry Kyprianou and netted with a low, left foot shot.

Southend United first half: Oxley, Demetriou, White, Lennon, Hendrie, Batlokwa, Dieng, Hyam, McLaughlin, Ba, Cox.

Second half: Bishop, Bwomono, Turner, Kyprianou, Coker, Kightly, Klass, Mantom, Barratt, Robinson, Hopper