Southend United v Bury FC - Maurice Dickson at Roots Hall
The Shakers, along with 200 of their die-hard fans, made the long haul down to the Essex coast- a trip which is bad enough on a Saturday let alone for a Friday night fixture - looking to add to their impressive away record and take three points back up North to Lancashire with their eighth away win of the season.
Bury boss Alan Knill admitted during the week that he's looking to bring in some new players to freshen up the squad, as Bury push on with their promotion challenge, but emphasised that any move would be dependant on one or two of the current squad moving on during the transfer window. However, tonight's squad, seeking their first win in seven games, showed no changes from the one which drew 1 - 1 with Aldershot_Town","height=600, width=800,scrollbars=1,resizable=1,status=1,toolbar=1,location=1");return false;">Aldershot Town last Saturday.
Shakers striker Andy Bishop is still a week away from rejoining the action but young winger Kyle Bennett kept his place in the team after an exciting performance against Aldershot.
The Blues, who are allegedly losing £25,000 a week, allowed boss, Paul Sturrock to add Woking midfielder Lee Sawyer to his squad this week but demanded an improvement in home form from his side who had only won three home games so far this season as opposed to five away wins including last week's impressive 2 - 1 win at Rotherham United.
The Shakers wearing white shirts, with Maroon shorts and socks, were tested early on two minutes when Barry Corr tried a Tigger Rigbyesque "up and over" free kick but Cameron Belford held on well.
It was the Shrimpers who started the brighter coming close on a couple of occasions notably when Craig Easton drove a couple of yards wide from 25 yards as the Shakers struggled to find their rhythm
It was Corr again who threatened next heading over Ryan Hall's free kick and it wasn't until the 16th minute that Bury got their first shot in on goal when, following good work by Skarz and Picken down the left hand side, Ryan Lowe's crisp shot could only find the side netting.
Hall should have put the Shrimpers one up on 19 when Sturrock's cross-evaded Corr and the young striker looked surprised to find the ball at his feet and he blazed over from close range.
The Shakers almost broke the deadlock on 21 when Ryan Lowe chipped Morris in the Southend goal from 15 yards but Barker was on hand to head the ball away from goal as it looked to be heading into the far corner.
The first booking of the game came on 30 when Phil Picken was yellow carded for a challenge on Ferdinand as the game descended into a series of free kicks, mainly for Southend.
Bury should have taken the lead on 35 when Gilbert's sloppy header allowed Lowe to get his shot in on goal from 12 yards but the Scouse hitman was left frustrated as, with Morris stranded, the ball cannoned back off the upright and into the arms of the grateful keeper.
It was Bury who had the next attempt on goal as Shakers skipper Steven Schumacher's curling free kick was tipped splendidly over the bar by Glenn Morris but the resulting corner was wasted by Bennett and Picken.
The first half came to a close with a couple of Bury corners but, truth be told, it was a fairly disappointing first half by the Shakers with every single attempt on the Shrimpers goal coming from Ryan Lowe.
Bury got the second half under way attacking the goal where their small, but noisy, band of loyal supporters were housed with changes made by either side.
Corr had the first attempt on goal when he headed just over under pressure from Sodje following Grant's corner on 46.
Bennett had the first non-Lowey shot after 53 minutes. He picked the ball up in his own half and ran to the edge of the box but his shot was weak and wide. A minute later though it was business as usual as Ryan Lowe had another go and his curling effort drifted narrowly past Morris' post.
Bury's second yellow card of the night went to Efe Sodje, in the 59th minute, for a foul on Sturrock but the resulting free kick came to nothing.
Lennel John-Lewis headed over from a Ryan Lowe cross as Bury broke on the counter attack on 61 when perhaps he should have done better but he was running at full tilt and did well to get on the end of the cross.
Steve Schumacher tested Morris from 30 yards when his free kick skidded up close to the diving stopper but he grabbed the ball at the second attempt on 62.
GOAL: Bury FC (Mozika 64)
The Shakers took the lead on 64 when Damien Mozika scored his first goal for the Shakers when he drove home from 12 yards following good work Lowe down the right hand side but the big Frenchman's celebrations with the Shakers faithful earned him the third Shakers yellow card of the night.
The Blues should have equalised within a minute of the restart when Sodje missed Gilbert's cross and Corr spun but he fired over the bar from ten yards when it looked easier to have scored.
Paul Sturrock made the night's first change when he replaced the ineffective Kane Ferdinand with Lee Sawyer on 68 minutes.
Cameron Belford produced a cracking save on 75 minutes when he palmed Ryan Hall's stinging shot away for a corner that was cleared by Lees.
The Blues made a second substitution on 76 when Bilel Mohsni replaced Blair Sturrock in midfield.
Alan Knill made Bury's first changes on 84 when Michael Jones replaced David Worrall and Andy Haworth came on for Kyle Bennett.
Southend's final swap came on 86 when striker Harry Crawford replaced full back Peter Gilbert as Paul Sturrock's men chased a point and the youngster was involved as Belford claimed he was fouled by Corr but Crawford's shot went just wide of the post.
The 200 travelling fans were having to endure a nervous five minutes of added time as Southend pushed for an equalizer and Andy Haworth should have done better when he burst through but played the ball the wrong side of the defender for John-Lewis
Harry Crawford earned Southend's first yellow card for a very late challenge on Belford on 90+2 and a minute later Alan Knill made Bury's final change when Ben Futcher replaced Phil Picken.
Goal: Southend United (Mohsni 90+5)
With just seconds remaining on the clock disaster struck for the Shakers when Hall's deep cross was met by Mohsni at the back of the six yard box and his header beat Belford to make it one all and so the Shakers were denied right at the death by one piece of sloppy defending and to be honest it felt more like a defeat than a point and it would make the journey home just that wee bit longer.
Bury's Man of the Match was |Damien Mozika.
Bury FC: Cameron Belford, Phil Picken, Joe Skarz, Tom Lees, Efe Sodje, David Worrall, Steven Schumacher © Damien Mozika, Lennel John-Lewis, Ryan Lowe, Kyle Bennett
Subs: Richie Branagan, Andy Haworth, Ben Futcher, Peter Sweeney, Michael Jones, Lennel John-Lewis, Max Harrop
Southend United: Glenn Morris, Sean Clohessy, Peter Gilbert, Graham Coughlan, Anthony Grant, Craig Easton ©, Barry Corr, Ryan Hall, Blair Sturrock (Mohsni 76), Chris Barker, Kane Ferdinand (Sawyer 68)
Subs: Bilel Mohsni, Lee Sawyer, Mark Phillips, Louie Soares, Harry Crawford, Miguel Comminges, Rhys Evans.
Referee: Pat Miller
Assistants: Wes Linden, Wade Norcott
4th Official: Dave Margetts
Attendance: 5175 (200 Bury)