Blues goalkeeper Arnold on why he hopes someone else will be player of the year next season!

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Player of the year - Southend United goalkeeper Steve Arnold
Player of the year - Southend United goalkeeper Steve Arnold

SOUTHEND United goalkeeper Steve Arnold was thankful to be named the Shrimpers player of the season.

But Blues’ shot-stopper does not want to win the prize again next year.

Arnold was chosen by Southend’s supporters as the top performer of the campaign.

And the custodian was delighted to get his hands on the trophy.

“First of all, it’s an absolute honour to play for a club like this,” said Arnold.

“The way the fans are and the way everyone is around the place is brilliant.

“It’s an honour and to receive this award is the icing on the cake for me.

“I’d like to say thank you to everyone who voted for me but hopefully next year I won’t win the award as it will mean someone is doing a better job further up the pitch.”

Blues’ season concluded with a 1-1 draw against Torquay United at Roots Hall on Sunday.

And Arnold was pleased with how the Shrimpers fought back to secure a share of the spoils despite being down to 10 men after Jason Demetriou had been dismissed.

“We wanted to go for the win to keep that good feeling going but after going down to 10 men I think it was important we didn’t lose,” said Arnold.

“Credit to the boys because I thought they were superb in the second half.”

The point meant Blues finished the season sitting 13th in the National League standings.

And the campaign included some memorable moments for Arnold.

“The first win at King’s Lynn was nice, right at the beginning of the season,” said Arnold.

“Altrincham was a highlight too.

“It was a scrappy win but it was the start of the turnaround and us having the belief that we could really do something.

“I saved a penalty too and it was an important win.

“We knew we couldn’t get the play-offs but it was important to turn it around and end positively which we’ve done.”

Blues managed to turn things around following the appointment of Kevin Maher as head coach in October.

And Arnold has thoroughly enjoyed working with Maher, his assistant Darren Currie and first team coach Mark Bentley.

“It’s been a breath of fresh air,” said Arnold.

“The gaffer, Daz and Benno have been great and the thing that resonates with me is that they’re normal blokes who work hard.

“They’ve been class.

“I knew Benno from years ago and I actually played with him so I’m showing our age!

“I knew what he was all about and they have all been class.

“Everything that’s happened on the pitch has been down to them.”

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