Crawley left Southend with a point this afternoon after a very entertaining goalless draw. The Reds created several clear cut chances but failed to find the opening goal. Former Red Nathan Ferguson had Southend’s best chance, striking the post in the second half.
Crawley had a great chance to take the lead in the opening five minutes as Ashley Nadesan fired a shot over the bar. Tom Nichols found himself in acres of space on the right-wing, which gave the striker plenty of time to pick out Ashley Nadesan in the box. Nichols’ strike partner was unable to find the target.
The Reds found themselves with another chance just minutes after with a quick corner routine. James Tilley was set the ball on the edge of the area, where he shifted the ball onto his favoured left foot, a Southend defender headed the resulting effort over the bar.
There was a brief scare as Joe McNerney under-hit a backpass to Glenn Morris, which set Greg Halford through on goal. The striker wasted his effort with an attempted chip over Morris, which failed miserably.
Jordan Maguire-Drew then found himself with space on the edge of the box. The winger just held onto the ball for too long. James Tilley then decided to go alone, and after skipping past two Southend players, curled a shot just wide.
The Reds had another brilliant chance on the stroke of half-time after Nadesan and Nichols linked up well. Nichols slid in Nadesan who unselfishly, opted to square to James Tilley instead of shooting. Nadesans cross was just overhit and slid beyond the reach of Tilley.
A dominant half for Crawley, who created plenty of chances but failed to trouble Mark Oxley in the Southend goal. The visitors remained a threat on the counter-attack and posed a threat from set-pieces, but Morris also remained untroubled for the Reds.
Crawley started the second half brightly, although it was Southend who nearly struck first. Former Red Nathan Ferguson struck the post from 20-yards out following a quick Southend breakaway.
Jack Powell was introduced midway through the second half as the midfielder looked to make an instant impact. The ball fell kindly to Powell on the edge of the area as the midfielder looked to volley at goal, a Southend defender made a crucial block to keep the score level.
Morris was then forced to make a critical save as the ball fell to the feet of Reeco Hackett-Fairchild only yards from goal. Morris spread his arms and made a brilliant save to deny the Southend winger.
Ashley Nadesan then forced an outstanding save from Oxley after Nichols cut the ball back to the striker. Nadesan fired the ball towards the near post as Oxley was forced to cover plenty of ground and scoop off of the line.
Crawley will leave Southend disappointed not to have claimed all three points as they prepare to take on Bradford on Tuesday night.
Reds XI: Morris; Tsaroulla, Tunnicliffe, McNerney, Davies, Tilley, J. Wright, Hessenthaler (Powell 64’), Maguire-Drew (Matthews 54’), Nadesan (Rodari 90’), Nichols