Bowyer on Southend game, his squad coming together and his players enjoying their football

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Charlton caretaker boss Lee Bowyer spoke to the press this morning at The Valley before the signing of Josh Cullen was confirmed.

The full interview is available on Valley Pass.

Below are some of the key talking points:

On team news for the away game against… 

"Tariqe Fosu will be on the bench. Maybe Ben Reeves could be on the bench and if we make an addition (Josh Cullen) they'll be in the squad as well. Our depth is going to start looking a lot different to what it did against Sunderland on the opening day. It’s good and I’m getting excited."

On his squad coming together…

“It’s not just the lads coming through the door, it’s the lads coming back from injury. You’ve got to remember (Jason) Pearce got injured in the first game of the season. (Igor) Vetokele out six-eight weeks, Ben Reeves out six-eight weeks. Tariqe out six-eight weeks. They were all long term injuries and they are all important players for us. And with the new additions we’re looking to bring through the door, that (injuries returning and new signings) is like six players, so that’s going to change things. For me, the lads that have come in have done well and not done themselves any harm but once we have all the players back and competing, it’s a completely different thing because then everyone is competing for places and when you do that the standard rises. So even in training on Tuesday, because we had those three or four players back training now, the standard goes up, the competitive side comes back even stronger, so like I said, I’m happy with what I’m seeing and I have been from day one in pre-season. But now, when you have all this competition with all the players, because they all want to play. There is competition for the goalies. Jed (Steer) just sitting there just wanting to get out there and play so Dill has to keep producing and that’s every position. That’s a positive for me, is it going to be harder to pick a starting 11? Yeah, but I’d rather that than be bare bones like we were in the beginning.” 

On the aim for Southend…

"To win. Every game we go into we look to win. It's going to be tough - Chris Powell, obviously, was here and did well here. He's had some good results with Southend and did well at the back end if last season but it's going to be tough and physical, like most games in this league. Whatever they throw at us I'm sure we will cope with that and it's what we do in possession and the final third which is most important to me because that's where we need to improve."

On if the players are enjoying their football…

"Yeah because every player you speak to, all they want to do is train and play. They just love playing football and that's no different with our players. They're enjoying, or I hope they are, they look like they are every day - apart from when they're running! Apart from that they're enjoying it and there's a good atmosphere around the place. We're getting players back from injury now which is important after some of the results that we had in the first weeks where we were down to the bare bones. Now that that's starting to change I expect the results to start changing."

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