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What's the greater moment in SUFC history?


  • Total voters
    25
  • Poll closed .

Yorkshire Blue

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
35,018
Location
London
Aptly enough on the day after relegation back to the fourth division, our second first round tie throws up two 4th division promotion seasons.

The first one, was the 1986/87 season and ORM's nomination of Stockport away. Football was having a bad time with the Bradford Fire disaster and Hysel and Southend were having a particularly rough patch. It had been a pretty miserable time since the euphoria (although not on here where no-one nominated it) of the club being crowned 4th division champions in 1980/81 had worn off. We'd managed to stay a couple of seasons in the 3rd division, but were soon relegated back down as usual and we even found ourselves bumping along in the lower reaches of the 4th - only managing to avoid the ignominy of re-election by goal difference.

If that was bad, things were even worse off the field where we endured the Anton Johnson era, the Christmas savings funds were raided by our crooked chairman and gates were at an all-time low.

But things turn around. In came David Webb and weaved his magic and with Richard Cadette banging the goals in for fun, Southend were at last riding high after a miserable few years. But in March Webby quit after a row with Jobson, and a team who'd won 4 straight then lost 3 out of 4 under 28 year old player-manager Paul Clark. The wobble meant that going into the last game of the season we needed to win at Stockport. In front of 500 jubilant fans, the Blues triumphed 2-0 with goals from Cadette - his 31st of the season - and Pennyfather to seal a famous victory.

Our second occasion GT Yarmouth's nomination of Freddy's debut hattrick, probably needs less introduction. The background was fairly similar, Southend had been going through a rough patch ever since a historic landmark (this time promotion to the 2nd division in 90/91) until Webby returned and then left again. His replacement was again another fans' favourite Steve Tilson, Tilly managed to keep us up and guide us to the Millennium Stadium to earn the job full-time.

However the new season had started badly - largely because we'd the lumbering donkey Broughton and his touch of a rapist getting in the way up front meaning the team couldn't score for toffee - but an injury crisis before the Swansea game saw us freed from the nightmare of Broughton and instead we stuck up front a largely unknown striker on loan from Grays. Freddy Eastwood's signing was probably one of the most underwhelming since Stanley Collymore's was met with with a chorus of "who?" and that wasn't were the comparisons were to end.

Eastwood's first touch was genius: instead of simply passing the ball back to Kevin Maher to loop an aimless ball into the corners, Eastwood picked out a forward pass to Wayne Gray, Gray scooted down the wing, centred and there was Freddy Eastwood's head to make it Southend 1 Swansea 0 after just 7 seconds for the type of dream start that even Hollywood script-writers might consider too good to be true. With the goal ensuring the crowd were on his side rather than his back, Freddy completed the ultimate dream debut by notching a hattrick (albeit with an aid of a deflection) - one with his head, one with his right and one with his left: a star had been born and the team never looked back, going up through the play-offs and onto lift the League One trophy ahead of our inbred neighbours the following season.

Two games guaranteed to put the smile back on the face of every Southend fan, but which one deserves to go through to the next round?
 
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