Terry Brown refused to point the finger of blame at his shot-shy strikers at Southend – despite Wimbledon not registering a single serious attempt on goal in Bank Holiday Monday's 2-0 defeat.

The Dons first season back in the Football League is petering out. A fifth defeat in six games left fans thanking their lucky stars that League Two's basement boys are in such horrendous form.

Because if it wasn't for Macclesfield, Barnet and Hereford's troubles, Wimbledon would be seriously starting to look over their shoulders – all their hard working in getting back to the League in danger of being undone.

Defensively, things were better against an albeit sluggish Southend side at Roots Hall, who did just about enough to secure the three points needed in their promotion push.

Paul Sturrock's men needed two goals in the last 20 minutes to get off the ground, but it was the Dons' lack of punch in front of goal that gave the near 1,000 travelling fans caused for concern.

Though Brown had nothing but praise for front pairing of record signing Byron Harrison and Jason Prior with the transfer window signings given the nod.

“We've not quite created enough going forward, but overall I was delighted with the contribution of Byron and Jason, they had really good games," he said.

“It is difficult to take positives with our form being as it is, but they worked hard and did what was asked of them.

"We defended well but if you aren't creating chances it is difficult to take anything from places like this, it's too demanding.

“We didn't get the ball down and play in the second half and it left us exposed, at times we invited pressure onto ourselves and it make things difficult.

“We're on a bad run at the moment and until we club is mathematically safe we need to pick up points. We're still not quite there yet.”

The first 45 was a half of half chances. The best came to Southend's Ryan Hall, whose low drive was well kept out by Seb Brown.

Freddie Eastwood's 70th minute free header was a disaster for the Dons. After keeping the hosts in check for most of the game, Wimbledon's defenders were slow to react and the Coventry City striker buried the chance.

There was no preventing the Shrimps second in time added on. Anthony Grant picked the ball up 25 yards from goal, took a touch and his sumptuous half-volley found the bottom corner.