SOUTHEND United’s under-18 coach Danny Heath refused to make any excuses after his side lost a ‘ridiculous’ EFL Youth Alliance South East Conference clash 8-5 at home to Northampton Town.

Blues took to the field a little over 36 hours after their FA Youth Cup campaign had been brought to a halt by Cambridge United at Roots Hall.

But Heath felt that did not have a bearing on the final result of the fixture at a wet and windy Boots & Laces.

“We’re definitely not going to use the FA Youth Cup match as an excuse,” he said.

“That’s football and as an academy we want to develop players that are robust and will grit their teeth.

“The boys normally do that, and they did do that here, but it’s no excuse.

“It was a game that could’ve ended up 10-10, it was a ridiculous game of football.

“The weather is something that we have to deal with.

“You can’t change the conditions, you have to play them and it’s the same for both teams so there are no excuses.”

Blues opened the scoring after just a minute with Tommy Lambourne scoring from 25 yards. The Cobblers equalised five minutes later but Blues went back in front when Lambourne fired home another fine finish.

Northampton equalised again midway through the first half with a penalty but the Shrimpers immediately regained the lead with Lambourne completing his hat-trick.

Lambourne then teed up Freddy Eastwood to make it 4-2 in the 35th minute but Northampton scored again just before the break.

The Cobblers equalised with another penalty at the start of the second half but Southend replied with a spot-kick of their own scored by Oli Coker.

However, Northampton then scored twice within a minute to take the lead before scoring twice more in the closing stages.

Blues: Taylor, Chandler, Arrowsmith, Brogan, Wallace (Shala 73), Davis, Anyadike (Garzon 85), O Coker (Brown 73), Lambourne (K Coker 85), Eastwood, Unwin