ECHOSPORT talks to Stevenage fan Reece Donnelly ahead of thia afternoon's clash with Southend United. 

What have you made of the season so far?

"Rough as expected. We essentially had three weeks to prepare for the season. Our manager is in his first season as a manager and we had the worst season in League Two history last year.

"But there is a somewhat belief in what Alex Revell wants to do and we like the team as supporters but the 14 game run without a win wasn't a fun time.

"But the team working hard, the stats being consistently good and eventually it looks like it has clicked. There's a lot to like.

"Revell being arguably the most likeable manager around certainly has helped him, now it's about pushing away from the bottom and just reconnecting the supporters with the team. I think we are getting there but today's game is crucial for that."

What was expected of Stevenage this season?

"More wins than managers this season would be a start!

"I think this year for Stevenage is all about building again. Building trust and the connection from the supporters and building a team. We don’t have lots of money for this level. If you don’t have money at this level, stability gets you competing. We have everything to prove this year but nothing to lose. Refreshing."

Southend fans know all about Luke Prosser and Ben Coker. How have they been playing for you?

"Not instant successes but far from failures. They bring very old school attributes and it's not always needed in this league anymore but they are good battlers. Luke Prosser has improved as time has gone on but is getting stronger every week.

"A little concerned with his partnership with stalwart Scott Cuthbert but if you threw a bus at him, Prosser will get it back out.

"Ben Coker is the same Ben Coker he was at your place. Rotated due to his injury record and his athleticism but he's clearly a very good defender at this level. Both great players to have in the dressing room. Both huge in our FA cup win against Hull. Both strong personalities."

How important is this game for Stevenage?

"We are 23rd, we need a win. It is that simple. Especially with it so tight at the bottom at the minute.

"With the win vs Vale, the FA Cup upset vs Hull and a good point at Walsall, it feels like we are getting somewhere after such a tough run. But this is the defining game really, are we good enough for this division and have we learnt our lessons. Defining for some players too.

"We need wins and with the greatest of respect to Southend, this is the team everyone will look to for a win."

How good will it be to be at the game again?

"It will be an amazing moment. We all support our football league clubs because of human connection and the people don’t we? And to have that stripped away was painful. Like watching a bad tv series.

"But to be back is everything. Stevenage is everything to me. It’s my heart, mind and soul. It’s what I look forward to on a Monday. And now finally I and we can feel somewhat United as a club again. I’m just very happy. I can do what I love doing again. It’s certainly something needed after this year and now the hashtag greater together the Stevenage have used can mean that bit more. Can’t wait."

Who is the dangerman?

"Tom Pett has transformed this team since he's come in. We quite frankly couldn't hit a barn door before he came in and he just added that final aspect. A different player than the one that left.

"A very direct runner and a top ball carrier into the attacking third. Has top quality on the ball and now a senior head. It has really allowed other members of our team like Remi Oteh who has three in five and Danny Newton to flourish and finally find the right formation for us as a team."