CALLUM Smith insists Southend Saxons will be taking nothing for granted when they host Saffron Walden this weekend.

Southend top the Regional Two Anglia table having won their last 12 games while Saffron Walden sit second from bottom.

But Smith is still expecting a tough test in Saxons' first match since beating Thurrock in mid-December.

"It will be a tricky game I’m sure, like all games are this season," said Smith.

"If we were picking a game to come back to off the back of a break, on paper, this might be one of them as we're at home with a team that’s struggling to find any consistent form.

"But that being said they’ll be looking to take a scalp so we’ll have to be wary."

Southend are currently nine points clear at the top of the table.

And Smith was delighted to sign off for 2023 with a 29-3 win against Thurrock.

"It was hugely important," said Smith.

"Not just because it was the last game before the break, but because it’s another step on the ladder for us.

"It wouldn’t matter if it was the first game, last game or any game in between, every game is a cup final for us at the minute."

Southend will take that determination into Saturday's clash.

But Smith is also feeling refreshed after a break in the season for Christmas.

"The break is always welcomed," said Smith.

"I’m personally trying to manage my body week to week when in season so having a couple of weeks off feels nice.

"Some of the lads are doing it tough with regards to playing with niggles but that’s part and parcel of it.

"It will all be forgotten if ultimately get to our end goal."

And Smith remains confident the Saxons can hold on to top spot.

"I think naturally when you win so many games on the bounce confidence begins to rise," said Smith.

"It’s a fine line of being confident and arrogant and I think we’re currently on the right side of that line.

"The club has been building for the position we’re in now for a number of years.

"As a group it wouldn’t be fair to the people who have put money, time and effort into this project for us not to be focused."