John Askey shares Southend United sympathy following Hartlepool United's Roots Hall success
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The Shrimpers have been in financial despair – so much so that club staff, both playing and otherwise, went for a number of months without being paid.
The club came within 10 days of not being able to start the new National League season having not been granted a licence by the league until it had provided enough evidence of clearing its debts owed to football creditors.
And although Kevin Maher and his side have been able to start the 2023-24 campaign – winning two of their opening four games of the season, the future of the club remains uncertain ahead of its return to court.
The Shrimpers have been placed under a transfer embargo since September last year – something which could get lifted should the club satisfy the HMRC’s demands.
Failure to do so, however, could lead to a 10-point deduction for the club among other issues.
Hartlepool boss Askey is no stranger when it comes to being part of football clubs who find themselves in difficult circumstances having been in charge at Macclesfield Town where players went unpaid for a number of months throughout the season.
Askey was in charge of York City where there had been uncertainty regarding the ownership of the club whilst even now at Hartlepool he is at a club which is currently up for sale.
And while Askey was delighted to be able to take three points from Roots Hall, having watched his side twice come from behind to claim a dramatic 3-2 win over the Shrimpers, the Pools boss offered his sympathy to Southend over their ongoing off-field situation.
“What it does do, when teams are in trouble, is it galvanises you as a football club,” said Askey.
"In my experience, I’ve gone to the last hour before – where it looked as though the club were going to go under and we kept the club going.
"But you don’t want to see clubs like Southend go out."
Askey added: “They’ve had a long history.
"I can remember when they were in the Championship and they had a really good team. And it’s always been a difficult place to come.
"As a player I don’t think I ever won here. The only time I’ve won here was when I came as manager of Port Vale.
"So it is a difficult place to come, no matter what team are playing for them, because the crowd is a little bit like at Hartlepool – maybe not as vocal as the Hartlepool supporters, but it’s a tight ground where supporters get behind them, especially with what’s going on.
"You just hope things get sorted.”