SOUTHEND United boss Kevin Maher is incredibly proud of the Shrimpers’ season - however it ends this weekend.

Blues host Rochdale on the final day of the National League campaign.

And Maher believes his players deserve every ounce of credit coming their way after overcoming a whole host of issues to perform to a high standard.

“To be in the position we are should not be underestimated,” said Maher.

“Maybe when we look back in a few weeks we’ll just think wow, what a season that was, whatever happens at the weekend.

“It’s an unbelievable achievement from everyone at the football club who has worked tirelessly to keep the club going.

“It’s a collective thing and everyone deserves credit.

“To be in with a chance of possibly still fighting for the play-offs on the last day is honestly just unbelievable.”

Maher was speaking ahead of Halifax’s match with Oldham Athletic which takes place on Thursday night.

Victory for the Shaymen would deny the Shrimpers the possibility of finishing inside the top seven.

And Maher insists there can be no denying it is the 10 point deduction - issued for not paying HMRC before a deadline set by the National League - which is to blame.

“We’d be fourth in the league without it and that’s a fact,” said Maher.

“You can talk about games we’ve lost and drawn which every club does but we’ve won enough points to be fourth in the league and that’s a marker of where they’re at as a team.

“It’s an unbelievable achievement off the back of a disrupted pre-season.

“We also didn’t have a full bench since January and there has been so much happening.”

Blues will head into the weekend sitting ninth in the standings.

And Maher admitted the season has felt longer than normal.

“It seems ages ago we played Oldham at home and the build up to that and the pre-season we had was crackers really,” said Maher.

“It feels about five seasons rolled into one with everything that’s happened.

“You can’t give the players enough praise.

“To be in the position we’re in is unbelievable and they deserve all the credit that comes their way.”

But Maher still remains determined to end the season strongly.

“We’ll see what’s needed and what’s still possible but we’ll always want to win football matches and that won’t ever change,” said Maher.

“We’ll be ready and we’ll be prepared.

“It’s going to be a good game with a good crowd in again.

“To finish at home is nice but we want to get a result and that’s the most important thing.”

Saturday's match is likely to attract a crowd of more than 8,000 and kicks off at 12.15pm.