SOUTHEND United boss Kevin Maher remains unsure if Rhys Murphy will be fit enough for the start of pre-season training.

The Shrimpers striker has been out since January with a knee problem which ultimately led to the 31-year-old having to have surgery.

And Maher will continue to monitor the forward’s fitness.

“It’s still ongoing with Rhys,” said Maher.

“He’s doing his work with the physios and the strength and conditioning guys.

“The nearer we get to pre-season we will know exactly where he is and what he can do in terms of joining in from the start or if we will have to manage him as it goes along.

“Fingers crossed he’s doing OK and he’s someone we’ll look to integrate during pre-season.”

Murphy scored nine goals in 24 appearances before being forced to the sidelines.