CHESTERFIELD boss Paul Cook opted to praise Southend United's performance rather than criticise how his own side played at Roots Hall.

The table-topping Spireites were beaten 2-1 by the Shrimpers for just their second league defeat of the season.

But, despite admitting to a sense of frustration, Cook was also keen to compliment Blues.

"We're disappointed and sick," Cook told Chesterfield's YouTube channel.

"To give the two goals away we have isn't nice, they're absolutely bad goals.

"But rather than getting into my own stuff I'd much rather compliment Southend.

"It was a great atmosphere in the stadium and a great result for Southend.

"The fans go home delighted.

"We've had loads of plaudits lately and we've had national media and everything but today is Kevin's day with his players and supporters and we wish them well."

Despite the defeat, Chesterfield still sit five points clear at the top of the National League table.

And Cook realises the Spireites will not always be at their best.

"Our lads have earnt one or two of these so we've got to accept that, " said Cook.

"Does it make it right now? No, but it's happened to us.

"Southend were a really robust, honest team who put it up to us and we should've gone on to score the second and third goal but we were back to giving the ball away."

However, Cook will not be dwelling on the defeat.

"We get on with it and we'll lick our wounds but I certainly want to pay Southend a massive compliment and say well done today," added Cook.