David Ball rescues late Fleetwood point in record run
A stunning late strike from David Ball kept Fleetwood Town on a club-record 12-match unbeaten league run as Southend United were pegged back in a 1-1 draw.
Southend looked comfortably cruising to victory against Uwe Rosler's promotion chasers after bossing the opening hour and going ahead towards the end of the first half through Anthony Wordsworth's opener.
In Marc-Antoine Fortune the visitors had a towering target inside the Fleetwood box. He could easily have given Southend the lead before the half hour, getting on the end of Simon Cox's diagonal ball before Alex Cairns put in a full-stretch save to palm the ball away.
Southend's pressure was made to count soon after as George Glendon's slip near the halfway line opened the door for Fortune and the big forward pulled it back for Wordsworth on the edge of the box, his effort striking the post and creeping under Cairns.
Fleetwood might have struck back before the hour as Ball went on a perfectly-timed run - kept the ball in play and cut it back - but Conor McLaughlin's close-range header failed to beat Ted Smith in the Shrimpers goal.
At the other end Jason Demetriou had claims for a penalty turned down when he appeared to be clipped by Cian Bolger.
Fortune then could have sealed it, finding the arms of Cairns from barely five yards out.
Southend boss Phil Brown made the decision to take his danger men out of the game and paid the price as a dramatic late twist handed the hosts a share of the spoils.
A break down the left looked to have fizzled out, substitute Markus Schwabl recycling it to Ball on the edge of the box and his blast into the top-left corner too good for Smith.
Town might even have won it as Cole collided with the keeper as Southend clug on - his fingertip talking it wide of the post.