Another game, another victory for Shrewsbury Town, as they manage a narrow victory over Southend United.
Former Chesterfield midfielder Jon Nolan’s first half goal, his first for the club, continues Salop’s fairy tale start as they remain unbeaten in the league.
Shrewsbury Town have equalled a club record by failing to be defeated in their first seven league matches.
Paul Hurst made one change from the side that drew 1-1 with Wigan Athletic. Joe Riley came in for James Bolton.
The home side began the match at a frantic pace. Shaun Whalley’s free-kick was headed by Stefan Payne straight into the arms of keeper Mark Oxley.
At the other end, former Plymouth Argyle man Ryan Leonard looked odds on to score, but he inexplicably slipped at a vital moment.
Then a short corner from Stephen McLaughlin saw him play a one-two with Harry Kyprianou. He blasted the ball across the face of goal, but Dean Henderson managed to snuff out the danger.
With a quarter of the game gone, ex Hull City goalkeeper Mark Oxley produced a smart save to deny Alex Rodman’s low effort.
In the 26th minute, Salop took the lead. Stefan Payne threaded a pass through the heart of the Southend United defence, which Jon Nolan latched onto. He showed his composure with an exquisite chip that found the back of the net.
Southend United rallied after going behind. Cypriot international Jason Demetriou, saw his dipping free-kick narrowly miss the target.
But Town looked dangerous on the break. Shaun Whalley’s mazy run culminated in a fine cross towards the direction of Stefan Payne, but he could not make the telling connection.
The Shrimpers had the final chance of the first half. Dru Yearwood turned his marker inside out, before driving an attempt goalwards. Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson turned behind.
At the start of the second half, Shaun Whalley switched possession to Jon Nolan, but his strike was blocked.
Shaun Whalley proved to be the ultimate ‘wing man’ for his teammates, regularly creating chances. Joe Riley received possession on the overlap and drove the ball in-towards Lenell John-Lewis. The burly frontman miscued and the danger was gone.
Phil Brown’s side continued to press forward in search of an equaliser. It wasn’t yet a case of now or never but Elvis was attempting to create an opportunity to get his side back in the game. Bwomono’s deep cross was flicked agonisingly past the post by Ryan Leonard.
Jon Nolan attempted to double his tally for Town but Mark Oxley comfortably collected his shot.
Then Michael Timlin’s eyes lit up as he found himself all alone in the box. Yet the long-serving Southend midfielder took too long to consider his options and Arsitote Nsiala arrived with a crucial challenge.
In all fairness Southend United were value for something from the contest. But Lenell John-Lewis had the opportunity to put the game out of sight. Yet his fierce drive was beaten away by Mark Oxley.
Former West Bromwich Albion and Reading striker Simon Cox was denied by a superb Dean Henderson stop, as the pressure cranked up on the home outfit.
Paul Hurst’s men managed to hold on and keep their place as the top dogs in League One. Southend drop to 19th. Shrewsbury go to Oldham on Saturday, Southend welcome Northampton.
Attendance: 5,029 (172 away fans)
Shrewsbury Town: (4-1-4-1)
1. Henderson, 2. Riley, 5. Sadler, 22. Nsiala, 12. Brown, 4. Godfrey, 7. Whalley, 8. Ogogo, 20. Nolan (82), 23. Rodman, 45. Payne (45)
Subs: 6. Beckles, 9. C. Morris, 10. Dodds (82), 11. Gnahoua, 14. John-Lewis (45), 15. MacGillivray, 17. Adams
Subs Not Used: 6. Beckles, 9. C. Morris, 11. Gnahoua, 15. MacGillivray, 17. Adams
Southend United: (4-3-3)
1. Oxley, 42. Bwomono, 27. Kyprianou, 5. Ferdinand, 24. Demetriou, 18. Leonard, 8. Timlin (85), 16. Yearwood (79), 17. McGlashan (70), 9. Fortune, 11. McLaughlin
Subs: 2. Hendrie, 10. Cox (79), 12, Ba, 19. Bridge (85), 20. Klass, 22. Smith, 31. Robinson (70)
Subs Not Used: 2.Hendrie, 12. Ba, 20. Klass, 22. Smith
Other League One Results:
AFC Wimbledon 1 – 1 Gillingham
Bristol Rovers 2 – 3 Oldham
Charlton 0 – 3 Wigan
Fleetwood 3 – 2 Bury
Northampton 3 – 1 Portsmouth
Oxford 2 – 2 Bradford
Peterborough 2 – 0 MK Dons
Plymouth 1 – 3 Blackpool
Rochdale 2 – 1 Doncaster
Rotherham 5 – 1 Walsall
Scunthorpe 0 – 1 Blackburn
Report by: Ryan Hillback