Guttridge to fight for place

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Luke Guttridge feels he is now ready to prove he warrants a future at Southend United.

The midfielder's prospects at Roots Hall appeared to be bleak when he was loaned out to Leyton Orient in early December.

His move came after failing to appear for Southend in a month, and he scored once in seven appearances for The O's.

Guttridge is now back with The Shrimpers and was a late substitute in last Saturday's FA Cup draw with Barnsley.

He feels there were reasons for his lack of form earlier in the season, but is now channelling his energies on proving his worth to manager Steve Tilson.

"I wasn't playing well for Southend earlier this season, but there were reasons," Guttridge told the Southend Echo.

"There were various things that were bogging me down and I wasn't 100 per cent focused on my game.

"The month away has allowed me to clear my head, though, and allowed others to think about things as well.

"I've realised one or two things and I've come back fully focused on playing for Southend and doing my best for the club."