SOUTHEND United assistant head coach Darren Currie is relishing his role at Roots Hall following a frustrating spell out of football.

Currie led Barnet to the National League play-offs before leaving the Bees in August 2020.

But, aside from a short temporary stint coaching Sheffield United's under 23 side, Currie was forced to wait for longer than he expected to be given another chance in coaching.

"Without sounding arrogant or over-confident I was surprised it did take me so long because I thought I'd done a decent enough job at Barnet," said Currie.

"Being honest it was a difficult period being out of the game because I've been in football since I left school at 15.

"To have the best part of a year out of the game was really frustrating.

"I had a cracking three months at Sheffield United but then it's taken a bit of time to get back in.

"I'm back now though, that's the main thing and I'm delighted to be here."

Currie won 29 of his 75 games in charge of Barnet.

But the 46-year-old now has no qualms at being an assistant with Blues.

"I've been an assistant before and I've been a first team coach as well as a manager so I know what each role entails," said Currie.

"I'm delighted to be working with Kev (Maher) and Benno (Mark Bentley).

"They're great lads with big history with the club.

"My job now is to do everything I can to make sure Kevin is successful and does well because I'm grateful he's given me this chance to work in his team."

Blues, who host Woking this weekend, are currently just above the relegation zone in the National League.

But Currie is enjoying the challenge facing him at Roots Hall.

"I'm really enjoying it," said Currie.

"I want it to be reflected in the results but there's lot of work to be done and we've identified that very quickly.

"We've had a good response from the players and the mood around the training ground is changing.

"I believe the boys are really behind the cause and they're getting behind the manager, just like I am.

"But it's small steps and we want the standards to be raised.

"We want to turn the club around and get it back to where it wants to be."

And the Witham based Currie will be doing all he can to transform the Shrimpers' fortunes.

"I have family in Southend and my son goes to school in Southend too so I have a lot of ties to the place and I'm desperate to be successful," said Currie.

"I've got no playing history with Southend but it's always genuinely been a club I loved playing at. It's a great place to play.

Witham. I have family in Southend and my son goes to school in Southend too so I have a lot of ties to the place so I'm desperate to be successful.