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Match Report: Fleetwood Town 1-1 Southend United

8 August 2015

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Declan McManus opened the scoring in the first half

Town’s first game of the 2015/16 Sky Bet League One season ended in a home draw against newly-promoted Southend United.

Declan McManus put the Cod Army ahead just after the half hour mark with a sublime 25 yard finish which flew into the top corner.

But substitute Dave Worrall pulled the Essex outfit back into the game late on as he lofted the ball over Chris Maxwell from the left hand side.

Graham Alexander named new signings Eggert Jonsson, Amari’i Bell, Jimmy Ryan, Bobby Grant and McManus in his side for Town’s opening game of the season.

Jamille Matt also made a return to the starting 11 having missed the entirety of last season through injury.

Town started the game well and had the opening opportunity when Grant weaved his way into the box but was denied by a fine save from Dan Bentley.

The Shrimpers’ first real chance came when Adam Barrett headed goalwards at the back post, but Town cleared their lines.

Left back Danny Andrew later tried his luck from distance with a low strike which went just wide of Bentley’s far post.

Phil Brown’s men grew into the game, and went close when Will Atkinson dragged an effort into the side netting before David Mooney tested Maxwell from the edge of the box.

McManus netted his first goal in Town colours however on 33 minutes when he struck a powerful effort from distance which flew into the top corner.

The Scotsman’s strike buoyed Alexander’s side, and minutes later Grant’s inviting cross into the area just evaded the oncoming attackers.

Some neat play from the visitors just before the interval saw Mooney burst through on goal, only to be denied by the offside flag.

McManus went close to doubling the advantage soon after the break as he rattled the post from close range.

Hurst skipped past a challenge for the visitors and let fly from distance, but Maxwell was equal to his effort with a low save to his left.

Town were working the flanks well, and Jimmy Ryan whipped a cross into the box from the right which Grant couldn’t quite connect with.

Ryan was once again involved in the action when he played a neat one-two with Antoni Sarcevic, before seeing his cross blocked well.

Matt’s first game back in a Fleetwood shirt ended on 70 minutes as he was replaced by Jamie Proctor, who partnered McManus up front.

Brown’s men were creating chances, and substitute Noel Hunt forced Maxwell into a decent stop, while Anthony Wordsworth wasted a good chance at the back post.

The Shrimpers were level with six minutes remaining however, as Worrall lofted the ball over Maxwell from the left.

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