FOR 40 days and 40 nights Southend United have been searching for a new manager.

And, after talks with Henrik Larsson were terminated earlier this week, the Shrimpers’ saga shows little sign of ending any time soon.

Kevin Bond departed Blues at the start of September after the worst start to a season in the club’s 113-year history.

But, unlike previous dismissals, there was no immediate replacement lined up.

Paul Sturrock replaced Steve Tilson straight after his departure while Phil Brown did the same when it was Sturrock’s turn to leave Roots Hall.

After Brown, Chris Powell took six days to come to the club while it was the same timespan for Bond’s arrival.

Yet, this time around, the Shrimpers are entering unchartered territory as their search for a new manager enters a painful sixth week.

Now, of course, time needs to be taken to ensure the right man is appointed, particularly given Blues’ perilous position at this stage of the season.

But the current wait seems unnecessarily excessive, especially as things must change if the current campaign is to not continue to meander towards a miserable conclusion.

The situation should ideally have been sorted when Blues’ scheduled trip to Portsmouth in mid-September was postponed due to international call-ups, resulting in an 11 day gap between games.

However, no appointment was forthcoming and the struggling Shrimpers have now slumped to 10 defeats in 12 League outings.

Blues are already seven points from safety with the worst defence in the country, meaning whoever does come to the club is facing an incredibly tough task to turn things around.

Gary Waddock remains as caretaker boss right now and it is hard not to feel sympathetic towards him at this stage.

Waddock, who has taken charge of the last seven games, has conducted himself well in extremely testing circumstances.

But the initial impact he had seems to have since been hindered by news breaking elsewhere which confirmed he would not be getting the gig on a full-time basis. The ongoing confusion and uncertainty has, in truth, made things quite tiresome and many now feel Brexit may be sorted before Blues!

Sol Campbell and Adam Barrett continue to be mentioned but will Campbell be happy knowing he was second choice and will Barrett be allowed to leave Millwall?

Either way, a combination of the managerial issue and the wretched run of results has made the past few weeks rather draining and depressing.

Drastic action is required to spark things back into life and a new manager is needed as quickly as possible because, as the League table shows, Blues are running out of time to get things right.