SOUTHEND United boss Phil Brown will be rolling back the years when Blues head to Great Wakering Rovers tonight.

The Shrimpers begin their pre-season schedule against Rovers at Burroughs Park.

And the match will rekindle a number of memories for Brown who previously spent five years in charge of club before returning towards the end of last season.

“They were great times we had here before and Wakering was always the start of pre-season so it’s like going back to yesteryear really,” said Brown.

“It’s an exciting time and the building of a new team so I’m really looking forward to it.

“Wakering have always welcomed us with open arms and it’s a nice relationship to have with a local club.”

Blues have been back in training since the start of the month and Brown will not be taking any risks in the opening friendly with at least 22 players set to take part.

“There will be a different 11 in each half,” said Brown.

“But not all of the players have done all of the sessions. Rhys Murphy had a slight niggle at the start but he trained fully yesterday so to not involve him would be over cautious I think.

“We thought Josh Coulson had a broken toe but it was heavy bruising and he managed to get a boot back on yesterday. I have to say I’ve been delighted with the attitude of the players and this will be another step towards the start of the season.”