SOUTHEND United manager Chris Powell is relishing his first ever Essex derby tonight.

This evening’s Checkatrade Trophy clash at Colchester United will be the 323rd game Powell has been involved with for Blues.

But it will be the first time he has faced the Shrimpers’ county rivals.

“I’ve been involved in matches against Colchester when I’ve been at other clubs but not Southend so I’m looking forward to it,” said Powell.

“I see it as an important game too so we’re taking it seriously.

“We want to get through to the next round and we want to keep our unbeaten run going.

“It’s obviously an Essex derby and we also have the chance to get to Wembley in this competition, which would be great for a club like us.”