AT ONE point last week I didn’t think I would be writing this.

I genuinely thought it was the end for Southend United and, being entirely honest, I’m still not sure how it wasn’t.

Following lower-league football we’re used to the usual ups and downs.

But I have never, ever experienced anything anywhere near as bad as Wednesday with Blues.

Sitting in the High Court for the Shrimpers’ winding up petition from HMRC it quickly become apparent the situation was far more serious than we had earlier envisaged.

And who knew that was even possible?

For not only was it HMRC demanding the club be wound up but further details emerged from elsewhere from a number of other companies revealing just how much they were owed.

Added together it was close to £1.4 million but the doom and gloom did not stop there.

One company insisted a payment which was promised had not been forthcoming while another argued against a payment Ron Martin said he had made.

With all this unfolding in front of my eyes and Ron Martin addressing the judge in a very nervous manner, it seemed like this was it.

I hadn’t been paying as much attention to the numerous cases which went before Blues but I’m certain companies had been wound up for less and it seemed likely the Shrimpers would follow.

But Judge Prentis opted to save Southend United purely because it was a football club with the attachment of fans.

After that came the inevitable 10 point deduction from National League and it left Blues rock bottom in more ways than one.

But when times are tough you really start to see people’s true characteristics.

It is easy to be associated with success but when the chips are down you learn most about those around you.

And, with that in mind, step forward Southend United’s players, management and staff.

I’ll be honest and admit I didn’t really want to go Friday.

After seeing the seriousness of the issues and, having been wound down by the never ending doom and gloom, I sensed the football itself was sadly starting to become insignificant.

But I was wrong and what transpired was a night in which we again saw just how much the Shrimpers mean to people.

Some fans are opting to boycott home matches right now and I can completely understand their reasoning.

There is no right or wrong.

It’s personal preference and no-one should be made to feel bad for what they think is best to do.

We’ve all been left hurt, annoyed, angry and saddened by the way Ron Martin has run our club into the ground.

And all those emotions came to the fore during a spine-tingly show of passion by Southend’s supporters.

With 10 minutes on the clock, Blues fans threw tennis balls onto the pitch to halt the match for four minutes.

But it was the noise of the protests that will also live long in the memory.

Every single fan in every single stand containing Shrimpers supporters rose to their feet and chanted with incredible gusto for Martin to leave the club.

It was a genuinely goose-bumps moment and again underlined the emotional attachment so many people have towards this football club.

Once play resumed, Blues quickly established a two goal lead they were able to protect with relative ease in what proved to be Lee Bradbury’s last game in charge of Eastleigh.

The team and the management again deserve incredible admiration for bouncing back from the latest in the very long line of serious setbacks.

But who knows what will happen next.

Wages will be due again this week but with that comes more worry of further punishments and point deductions given previous warnings from the National League.

The situation is simply disgusting and the owner should feel ashamed he has allowed the Shrimpers to stoop so low.

Whatever happens from here these players and the management around them forever deserve a place in Roots Hall folklore.

And I just hope so much that this squad, the staff and, most of all, the incredible supporters get the chairman their qualities deserve before it is too late and these articles really don't get written anymore.