Rovers travel to Southend United on Tuesday night looking to make it back to back wins in Sky Bet League One.
Darren Moore’s side got back to winning ways with a convincing 2-0 victory over Bristol Rovers last time out, with goals from Kieran Sadlier and Jon Taylor sealing all three points.
Southend have won just one of their opening 13 games so far this season, and that came when they beat MK Dons back in September.
Brief history of Southend United
Southend United play at the 12,392-capacity Roots Hall, with the ground being their home since 1955. They are nicknamed ‘The Shrimpers’, a reference to the town’s maritime industry, with a shrimp taking place in one quarter of the club’s crest.
The Shrimpers have won promotion from League One twice in the last 30 years, winning the division in 2006, returning to the second tier for the first time in 20 years, before being relegated the following season. The year after would see the Shrimpers face Rovers in the League One play-off semi-final, with James Coppinger inspiring Rovers to Wembley with a hat-trick in the second leg at the Keepmoat Stadium.
Southend became famous for their League Cup victory over a Manchester United side featuring the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney in November 2006, with a Freddy Eastwood goal ensuring that the Shrimpers would be one of just a handful of teams to hold a 100 per cent win record over the Red Devils.
This campaign is the Shrimpers fifth consecutive season in League One, following their return in 2015 after a penalty shoot-out win over Wycombe Wanderers in the League Two play-off final, with a 7-6 spot-kick victory following a 1-1 draw after 120 minutes, with former stopper Daniel Bentley saving the decisive strike.
Who’s the gaffer?
Gary Waddock is currently in caretaker charge at Roots Hall after the departure of Kevin Bond earlier this season. Waddock has won one and drawn two of his eight games in charge.
Ones to watch
The experienced defender signed for Southend in the summer after a short stint with Sky Bet Championship side Hull City at the end of last season. Ridgewell has a wealth of experience after making more than 300 appearances combined during spells at Aston Villa, Birmingham City and West Bromwich Albion. After leaving the Hawthorns, the 35-year-old moved to the MLS where he played close to 100 games for Portland Timbers before moving back to the UK at the start of 2019.
The Irish winger signed permanently for Southend after impressing during a loan spell from Nottingham Forest at the end of the 2014/15 campaign, where he helped the club win promotion to the third tier. His best goalscoring campaign came in 2016/17, chipping in with eight goals from the wide midfield position and he subsequently signed a new long-term contract to tie him down at the club for the next three years.
The striker joined from then-Premier League side Fulham on a permanent deal back in January after spending the first half of the season on loan at Scunthorpe United. Humprhys has also spent time on loan at Shrewsbury Town and Rochdale but has really found his feet at Roots Hall, scoring 10 goals in 18 league appearances so far.The final day of last season saw Humphrys come off the bench to score the winning goal for Southend in a 2-1 win over Sunderland, saving them from relegation to League Two.
Last time out
Rovers completed the double over Southend United with a 3-0 victory at the Keepmoat Stadium in February. John Marquis opened the scoring early on before goals from Mallik Wilks and Herbie Kane sealed three points over the Shrimpers for the second time that season.
This came after Rovers' victory at Roots Hall on the opening day, with Marquis and Wilks both on the scoresheet again before Tommy Rowe made it 3-0. Tom Hopper and former Rovers striker Theo Robinson scored to set up a nervy finish in Essex, but Rovers held on to secure three points on day one of the 2018/19 season.