sport

Brown content with stalemate

Southend boss Phil Brown felt his side's first goalless draw of the season against Newport was a fair reflection of the game.

The Shrimpers were on top in the first half of a mostly uneventful encounter and they came close to taking the lead in the 31st minute when Will Atkinson's close-range header from Kevan Hurst's right-wing corner was pushed on to the right-hand post by Lenny Pidgeley.

The County goalkeeper then pushed away an angled effort from Barry Corr before he impressively kept out a deflected header from Lee Barnard.

The visitors improved after the break on a difficult pitch but Robbie Willmott wasted their best chance in the 52nd minute when he sent his spot-kick wide and over the crossbar after Mark Phillips had brought down Ryan Burge.

Willmott was then also denied by Southend goalkeeper Dan Bentley right at the end of the game.

"Both teams had a go and the frustrating thing for me was our lack of composure in the final third," said Brown.

"We have shown against teams like Chesterfield and Millwall that when we are more composed we score goals but we didn't have that in this game.

"Newport came in to it more in the second half and we got a break when their player destroyed the roof with a penalty.

"But I think the man of the match has to be the groundsman because I really have no idea how we've managed to get this game played considering the weather we've had."