Football - Brown hails matchwinner Leonard

Southend manager Phil Brown heaped praise on Ryan Leonard after the midfielder scored twice in his side's 2-1 win against Portsmouth.

Leonard struck at the end of each half to fire the Shrimpers up to fourth in the League Two table and Brown was delighted with Leonard's part in the win.

"Ryan got two goals and I think he's starting to realise what he actually has in his locker," said Brown. "He's over six foot tall, he's strong, powerful, quick and can certainly strike a ball as well.

"We saw that for his second goal here and I think we just about deserved to edge it in the end.

"We rode our luck at times and Daniel Bentley had to make some good saves.

"But we huffed and puffed in the second half and got our reward with the goal right at the end.

"I think that again showed the spirit and togetherness we have in this group of players and that definitely counts for a lot at this level.

"The early substitution (Barry Corr on for Anthony Straker) helped us too because we needed to get more height in to our team ."

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