Southend manager Paul Sturrock lashed out at his side following their shock 3-1 defeat at home to struggling AFC Wimbledon.

The Shrimpers went ahead midway through the first half when skipper Sean Clohessy fired home from the penalty spot but the Dons hit back with a trio of strikes, to leave Southend 10th in the npower League Two table, six points below the play-offs.

"We were sloppy and lethargic and I think we got what we deserved, nothing," said Sturrock. "For the first time this season I would say the players let the club down and they need to look in the mirror at themselves.

"For us to make the play-offs we need to win seven of our remaining nine matches but the galling thing is that there's a good team in there somewhere.

"We've shown it at places like Rotherham, Port Vale, Chesterfield and Cheltenham and we also won at Wycombe and Torquay when they were flying.

"But for whatever reason it just doesn't happen for us at home and we have to get to the bottom of that as we have two must win matches coming up at Roots Hall against Torquay and Plymouth."

Wimbledon manager Neal Ardley said: "We had a good team talk in the hotel and we wanted to play bravely and our formation showed that playing two out and out wingers against a team pushing for promotion on their own ground."

"It was disappointing to go one down with a sloppy penalty because other than that they didn't look like scoring at all.

"However, I mentioned a few times this year about character and that is certainly something we showed this evening to put in a performance was outstanding.

"As a squad we were brilliant, not just the 11 on the pitch but also the subs and even the players who didn't come on. There is a feel good factor around the team and they are all working well together recently which is showing in our results."