A key decision made by referee John Brooks bore the brunt of Phil Brown’s frustration after the Southend United manager rued ‘two points dropped’ following their 2-2 draw with Northampton Town on Saturday.
Brown was referring to the moments before half-time when, with the home side leading 2-1, the Cobblers were awarded a controversial free-kick 25 yards from goal and after Matty Taylor’s effort crashed against the post, John-Joe O’Toole was on hand to scramble home the rebound and ultimately earn his side a point.
Earlier, Jermaine McGlashan and Simon Cox twice put Southend ahead but Marc Richards and then O’Toole replied for Northampton.
“It was two points dropped, and it wasn’t for the want of trying neither,” said Brown afterwards. “The way we played first-half and second-half I thought there was only going to be one winner.
“Again I’m here bemoaning referees and the key decision that he gives a free-kick on the edge of the box with a minute to go before half-time and I cannot see what he’s seen.
“He must be the only guy in the stadium to have seen a free-kick incident. If we’re going to do anything this season we’re going to have to climb that mountain ourselves.
“We had a go second-half and we had two or three great chances at the end. Nile Ranger’s header, Nile heading the ball down to Theo Robinson and then Nile and Woody [Anthony Wordsworth] getting in the way of each other. Three good chances to win the game.”
Saturday was the third time Justin Edinburgh had taken a team to Roots Hall this season and after winning on the first two occasions, he again avoided defeat to Brown’s side.
The Shrimpers manager added: “Justin Edinburgh’s sides have good battling qualities. It surprised me when he lost his job at Gillingham.
“But they have got goals in their team and it wasn’t any surprise to me that it was 2-2 at half-time.
“Justin’s done a good job since he’s gone there. He’s turned it around and it looks as if they are playing with confidence and for their manager.”