Corr rescues replay for Southend

6 Nov

The familiar trip to Macclesfield didn’t inspire the Shrimper Army too much when the much-anticipated first round draw was made, but around 250 made the 200 mile trip to Cheshire to see a much-changed Southend side.
On the eve of the game, Paul Sturrock had boosted his attack with the signings of Jack Midson from Oxford and Antonio German from QPR, both joining on short-term loan deals.
Perhaps surprisingly, both began the match in attack, with Blair Sturrock and Barry Corr dropping out, presumably with a JPT game with Charlton in mind. Sofiane Zaaboub was again rather bafflingly preferred to the impressive Ryan Hall, and Sturrock solved the problem of Peter Gilbert’s suspension by bringing in Luke Prosser in an unfamiliar left back role. Graham Coughlan partnered Bilel Mohsni at the back with Chris Barker still out with a calf strain. Happily, Craig Easton had recovered enough to compensate for Michael Timlin’s recall by Swindon.
There may have been fresh faces in the starting line-up, but frustratingly, the basics continue to elude Southend. The opening Macclesfield goal was struck within the first ten minutes, and it was a long throw from the left that was not cleared, allowing Colin Daniel to hit a half-volley into the ground and beyond the dive of Glenn Morris.
It didn’t seem to dampen the spirits of the Southend fans, some of whom were singing some bizarre songs about a parrot called Harry. Makes a change from the theme tune to blind date, I suppose. In fact, traffic on the M6 had held up the Shrimpers Trust coach, whose members were spared having to witness the poor defending that resulted in Daniel’s opener.
Lightning almost struck twice when Barnett met another long throw from the number 7 Chalmers, but his header bounced back off the bar with the goalkeeper Morris beaten.
Gradually though, Southend got a foothold in the game. Sean Clohessy and Josh Simpson were causing problems down the right, and Clohessy put a delightful ball in for Midson who could not direct his header below the crossbar from eight yards.
Sofiane Zaaboub then should have done better when he was teed up ten yards from goal, but he sliced his shot into the side netting.
Blues came even closer a couple of minutes later, and can have a genuine grievance that the referee did not see a Macclesfield hand convert Clohessy’s wicked cross onto the post. Jose Veiga gratefully grabbed the rebound, and the home side breathed again.
Zaaboub did win the penalty that gave Southend their equaliser. Again, Clohessy was the provider, his excellent cross was brought back inside by the Frenchman, who was clearly tripped by a Macclesfield defender.
Antonio German stepped up, and the 18-year-old showed plenty of guts on his debut, placing his penalty high to the goalkeeper’s left in front of the happy, if a little damp, Southend fans on the open Silkman terrace. It was a cool penalty, but then again it should have been – he is A German.
For the rest of the half, Southend were the better side. It could have been two when the loanees combined – Midson slipping in German who tried to round Veiga, who to his credit had advanced from his goal with speed and intent, and the goalkeeper managed a last-ditch tackle to deny the Shrimpers man.
Macclesfield could have taken the lead again when a well-worked move from the right ended with a 15-yard shot, but Morris made a fine save to tip the ball over.
The mood was upbeat at half-time, but once again an early goal threw a spanner into the works. Again, it was basic stuff – Nat Brown unmarked to convert a 35 yard free kick from the right with his head.
This sparked Southend’s worst period in the game. The passing became sloppy, neither forward could successfully hold the ball, and Macclesfield should have had a second, with Tyrone Barnett a constant menace. He drilled a 25 yards shot over after waltzing past several half-hearted challenges, and then feeding sub Vinny Mukendi, whose low shot was straight at Morris.
Bilel Mohsni then had a header saved in a rare Southend attack, but Veiga saved well from the Frenchman, then at the other end, Prosser was caught dwelling on the ball and Mukendi fluffed his lines when he really should have scored.
Manager Sturrock then made the change that would completely alter the game’s complexion. He took off the tiring German and Sofiane Zaaboub, replacing them with Ryan Hall and Barry Corr.
Hall had already put in a couple of dangerous crosses before a quite brilliant angled ball, whipped in with pace, was tucked away from close range by the sliding Corr.
This sparked Southend into life, and for the remainder of the game, the home side were hanging on. Blues forced a series of corners but could not quite create the clear-cut chance they needed to win it. Mohsni did send a header just wide, but the defender still awaits his first Shrimpers goal.
As it was, the Silkmen had the final effort, another Chalmers throw finding Mukendi, whose tame header did not bother Morris.
A patchy performance from Southend, but given Macclesfield’s home record this season, a decent result.


One Response to “Corr rescues replay for Southend”

  1. Rob Noxious November 7, 2010 at 10:11 am #

    A superb report. I felt like I was on the damp terrace with you. Delighted that you managed to get the German penalty gag in too. All the best from your man out West.

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