All you need to know and more ahead of Saturday's gameLuton Town v Southend United
Sky Bet League 2
Saturday 11th October 2014, kick-off 3pm
Live commentary on Hatters Player, DiverseFM, BBC3CR and lutontown.co.uk
• Hatters unbeaten in five league games
• Southend won four of last five matches
• Head2Head: Town wins: 37, Southend wins: 28, Draws: 19
WHO? Southend United, aka the Shrimpers, the Blues or the Seasiders. Not to be confused (not that they might be) with Morecambe who are the Shrimps. Both sides actually met last week when and the Shrimps beat the Shrimpers. The Shrimpers have never beaten the Shrimps.
Enough of typing Shrimpers and Shrimps.
Southend were formed on 19th May 1906 and play their home games at Roots Hall. Former Hull boss Phil Brown, who won last month’s manager of the month award (jinx), is in the Roots Hall hotseat and he guided Southend to the League 2 Play-Offs last term where they lost in the semi-finals to Burton Albion.
HISTORY BOOKS. 10-time Essex Professional Cup winners and four-time Essex Senior Cup winners Southend have enjoyed plenty of success down the years. The Shrimpers’ most recent success game in the mid-2000s when the club won back-to-back promotions, taking them from League 2 to the Championship. They have spent just seven seasons outside the bottom two divisions.
HAVEN’T WE MET BEFORE? The Town and the Shrimpers have been regular adversaries down the years, meeting each other 84 times. The Town coming up the better in the head-to-head record with 37 wins to the Shrimpers’ 28, but Southend have won the last two meetings, both at Roots Hall, the last an FA Cup tie in 2008.
JINX ALERT. Okay, so Phil Brown has won the manager of the month award. If we mention that enough times will that counterbalance the next sentence that could put the mockers on a Town victory on Saturday? Well, the Hatters go into the game unbeaten in their last 12 matches against Southend at Kenilworth Road, winning seven and drawing five of the last five meetings on Bedfordshire soil.
DO MENTION. Their win over Manchester United in the League Cup in 2006 against a United team including Wayne Rooney and Ronaldo.
DON’T MENTION. Colchester United. They don’t like them very much.
OLD BOYS NETWORK. Duncan Jupp, Simon Royce, Ian Benjamin. Three players to represent both the Town and the Shrimpers down the years.
THIS TIME ROUND. Southend arrive at Kenilworth Road on Saturday in fourth place in League 2, two points behind the Town in the table. After the aggregate to Burton in the Play-Offs last season, the Shrimpers began their fifth campaign in League 2 with a 1-0 victory at Accrington before winning 2-0 against Stevenage at Roots Hall. Four games without a win followed, including defeats to Wimbledon and Plymouth, before Brown’s side strung four successive victories together in October. Wins over Portsmouth, Cheltenham, York and Shrewsbury propelled the Shrimpers up the table. However the good run of form came to an end last weekend with defeat to bogey club Morecambe.
ONE TO WATCH? Shaquile Coulthirst. The highly-rated young striker on loan from Premier League Tottenham has an exciting game to match his name. An England Under-19 international, he’s already scored twice this term for the Shrimpers and last season made his debut for Spurs as a substitute in the Europa League against Anzhi Makhachkala.
WHO'S THE REF? Christopher Kavanagh. The Manchester FA official takes charge of his ninth match of the season on Saturday. So far the whistler has dished out 13 yellow cards and not a single red. He took charge of two games involving the Hatters last season, and both ended in 1-0 defeats (Southport away and Woking home).
ON THE DAY. The Town will be celebrating the 19-year anniversary of the 4-0 Anglo Italian Cup defeat at Genoa in the Luigi Ferraris Stadium on Saturday. Joking aside, the Hatters’ first win on 11th September came with a 5-0 victory over Tottenham Hotspur back in 1897.
TICKETS PLEASE! Tickets can still be purchased from the Luton Town ticket office at the usual matchday prices of: £20 adults, £15 seniors and young adults, £12 golden seniors, £8 youths, £5 juniors. Southend have sold out their 1,032 allocation. Supporters must note that cash turnstiles will not be in operation for this match and that tickets are only available to customers already on the ticket office’s database.
TOWN TEAM NEWS. The Town could be without Jake Howells who missed training on Thursday through illness. Right-back Michael Harriman, signed on-loan from Queens Park Rangers on Thursday, will go straight into the squad with Paul Connolly and Curtley Williams both unavailable. Fraser Franks has returned to training following a hernia operation but his former Welling teammate Ross Lafayette remains sidelined.
LIVE AND ONLINE. Hatters Player is the only place to listen to online commentary of the Hatters this season and once again the DiverseFM team will be bringing subscribers all the action from Kenilworth Road. What’s more there will be a full report, reaction and photographs post-match and live text updates during the match itself.
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