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Dan Bentley keeping it clean as he chases down Southend United record

10 April 2015

Southend United goalkeeper Dan Bentley can break a 34-year-old club record if he can keep the Blues' next two opponents at bay.

After returning from a groin injury three weeks ago, Bentley kept out Cambridge United to record his eighth successive home clean sheet, becoming only the second Southend goalkeeper to achieve the feat.

Mervyn Cawston was the first man to do so, and he extended that run to 10 games as Southend went on to clinch the Division Four title back in the 1980/81 season.

Bentley is now just one behind Cawston, following Southend's 2-0 victory over Mansfield Town on Good Friday. The highly-rated stopper didn't have a shot to save that afternoon, but he can expect to be busier over the next few days when Tranmere Rovers and Newport County make the trip to Roots Hall, with both sides needing victories for very different reasons.

Tranmere are first up on Saturday, and Micky Adams' men could do with the points desperately - they currently sit in the bottom two with five games left to play.

Rovers have failed to score in half of their 20 games on their travels, and if they can't find a way past Bentley on Saturday, then the 21-year-old 's name will be etched next to Cawston's in the Southend history books.

But Bentley will stand alone with 11 clean sheets if he can then keep Newport County out on Tuesday evening, with the Exiles currently clinging on to the coveted final Play-Off spot.

Unlike the 1980/81 campaign, Southend won't lift the title this season, but automatic promotion is a very real possibility. If Bentley, and those in front of him, can continue their fine defensive form, then that third place, and automatic promotion, is certainly not out of reach.

You can keep track on Southend's promotion push and all the weekend's action by following our live Twitter feed - @SkyBetLeague2.

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