Kevin Bond saw his patience pay off as his Southend side battled to a 2-1 Carabao Cup win at Stevenage.
The Shrimpers are pointless from two League One games this season but Charlie Kelman’s terrific double inspired the visitors to a come-from-behind victory at the Lamex Stadium.
Dean Parrett’s sublime finish sent the hosts ahead before 17-year-old Kelman’s intervention put Bond’s campaign on track.
“I thought we were good value for the win, to be fair, and I’m really pleased for the boys because they’ve worked incredibly hard for a reward like this,” he said.
“We got caught a little cold with their goal but young Charlie has come up with a couple of great finishes to give us what we deserved.
“Both the lads up top ran their socks off and I couldn’t have asked for more.
“Yes, it’s been a tough start but we always knew if we stayed patient it would come, and tonight we’ve shown what we’ve got when we trust ourselves to relax and play.
“Hopefully this’ll give us a springboard from which to bounce off and push on as the games come thick and fast.”
Parrett’s instinctive turn and strike put Stevenage ahead to mark his perfect return to the Lamex.
But Kelman flipped the game around, heading home a pinpoint Elvis Bwomono cross before smashing the ball home for Southend’s first EFL Cup win since 2010.
Stevenage boss Dino Maamria said: “It’s very disappointing to lose because our club has a great history and tradition in cup competitions. But actually the performance was pretty good.
“I thought we were excellent first half. We stuck in there when the going got tough in those opening exchanges, but once we settled, we really grew into it.
“You have to look at the performances of the young boys. Luis Fernandez is just 17 and has put in a man-of-the-match performance, Charlie Carter is just 21 and showed what he can do.
“We finished with just 10 guys, and I could not have asked for more from any one of my players. Our concern now turns to making sure we can get a side out to compete on Saturday.”
Comments on this story express the views of the commentator only, not Bailiwick Publishing. We are unable to guarantee the accuracy of any of those comments.
Once your comment has been submitted, it won’t appear immediately. There is no need to submit it more than once. Comments are published at the discretion of Bailiwick Publishing, and will include your username.
There are no comments for this article.