SOUTHEND United are currently under a transfer embargo, the Echo understands.

Blues boss Paul Sturrock could have just 13 fit senior players for Saturday’s League Two clash against Exeter City at Roots Hall .

And, as things stand at the moment, the Scotsman will not be able to strengthen his depleted squad before taking on the Grecians.

“Southend have an embargo in place at the moment and have had for a little while now which is why no players have been coming in to the club just recently,” said a source close to the club.

“Britt Assombalonga’s loan was able to be extended because the original loan was made when the club were not under an embargo.

“But for the last few weeks it has not been possible to complete transfers and people will need to be paid off before any new signings can be made.

“The injury situation hasn’t helped either but it’s definitely why Southend have not been able to bring people in.”

Blues will need to pay outstanding debts to come out of the embargo and make new signings, and that will come as a blow to Sturrock.

Neil Harris is definitely out with a knee problem and Barry Corr is not yet ready to return from his long-term knee injury.