Sky Bet League 1 match report: Barnsley 0-2 Southend Southend sink Barnsley
Last Updated: 12/03/16 7:50pm
Southend manager Phil Brown was pleased his side's game plan came off after seeing them win 2-0 at Barnsley.
The Shrimpers won at Oakwell following goals from Jack Payne and Michael Timlin, meaning Barnsley slip out of the play-offs with Southend now just one point behind.
Brown said: "One or two decisions have gone against us at the wrong time. Today, I still thought decisions went against us, but we had a game plan to come here.
"We knew they're a good side and the form team in the league at the moment.
"They're full of youthful exuberance, full of energy, full of good footballers. We just stuck to the game plan and the spine of the team stood up to the test."
Southend took a fourth-minute lead with Payne's sixth of the campaign. In the box with his back to goal, he turned the defender and slotted the ball low into the corner with his weaker right foot.
Barnsley had the chance to draw level from the penalty spot after Manchester United loanee Ashley Fletcher was brought down by Southend keeper Daniel Bentley.
Conor Hourihane stepped up but dragged his spot-kick wide.
Southend sat back in the second half and looked to restrict the home side to few chances.
Fletcher scuffed a shot from six yards out and Marley Watkins headed wide as Barnsley lacked a cutting edge in front of goal, and Timlin confirmed the points for Southend with a 25-yard strike in time added on.
Brown said: "We got the first goal and could have gone on to be three or four up after 20 minutes. I thought the quality was there today.
"The penalty unhinged us a bit and we got to half-time and came out with the mentality that 1-0 would win the game, but it was nice to see Michael Timlin get on the scoresheet too."
Barnsley caretaker head coach Paul Heckingbottom said: "It wasn't a disappointing display, just a disappointing result.
"I thought we started sluggish in the first 15 minutes; they started the brighter.
"They got the goal which was fully deserved and that kicked us into gear.
"The missed penalty was a blow for us but we definitely performed better in the second half.
"We couldn't get the breakthrough and if we'd have got the goal at any point we'd have had the momentum and been more likely to win the game
"Credit to Southend, they've come here and done a good job. Good game plan and they started brightly.
"The players have been fantastic. The performances have been great so we continue doing the same things and look to put it right next week."