IF Sol Campbell had not already realised the size of the task facing him at Southend United – he certainly did after seeing the Shrimpers suffer a 7-1 drubbing against Doncaster Rovers.

Tuesday night’s humiliation at Roots Hall saw an already shocking season plunge to a deeper state of despair as Rovers ran riot against the nine-man Shrimpers.

And one look at the League table and Blues’ recent results shows Campbell is facing a huge task to keep this team in the division.

Southend started the season with six successive League defeats for the first time in their 113-year history and the Shrimpers have managed to pick up just five points from their opening 14 games.

That wretched run already sees Blues eight points from safety with the worst defensive record in the country having already conceded 40 goals.

Campbell, who enjoyed an illustrious playing career, is to be commended for wanting to take on such a daunting challenge.

But the 45-year-old has already shown he is not afraid of taking on tough tasks.

For, last November, Campbell took over at Macclesfield Town when they sat bottom of the League Two table, five points from safety.

Yet he will was still able to keep the Silkmen in the division.

Campbell will now be looking to do the same with the Shrimpers but this will be a far tougher task.

The former Arsenal defender is taking control of a team desperately short of confidence, character and quality.

And in my 30 years of following Blues’ fortunes I have never felt as low as I do about things right now.

Steve Wignall’s short regime was tough to endure back in 2003, while the financial problems which led to virtually the whole squad leaving seven years later was another difficult period.

But this current predicament seems even more painful right now and will take time to turn around.

Campbell is a manager, not a magician, and he faces an extremely tough start to his Roots Hall regime. The Shrimpers face table-topping Ipswich Town this weekend before three tough looking away trips in succession against Sunderland, Portsmouth and Burton Albion.

However, Campbell’s appointment seems far more sensible than Henrik Larsson – Blues’ original choice – due to his superior knowledge of the English game and the lower Leagues.

His arrival also ends an uncertain 46 day period during which Gary Waddock remained as caretaker manager following the departure of Kevin Bond.

Campbell’s arrival would hopefully bring more much-needed stability, but it is only the start of what needs to be sorted.

The whole structure of the club, along with the mentality, needs to change drastically before the tide can start to turn for the Shrimpers.

But, after Tuesday night’s embarrassment, things cannot really get much worse. Can they?