After going down 2-0 to the Bantams at the weekend, Southend replicated the same scoreline on Tuesday evening, with decisive goals from Nile Ranger and Ryan Leonard.
Mark Robins commented in the aftermath: "We shot ourselves in the foot from minute one, we didn’t start the game as brightly as our opponent. Worse than that, we’ve conceded the goal that put us on the back foot.
"It is really disappointing, we looked like rabbits in the headlights. We’ve got to demand more from each other. Working for each other and creating more, we clearly haven’t done that tonight. It was shell-shocking watching that performance.
"There is so much work to be done, I knew that before I came in. I’m searching for a group who are capable of winning games. Dion Kelly-Evans is small is stature but has got a heart bigger than most. But things were wrong, so we tried to change it."
Despite reserving praise for the central defensive pairing of Nathan Clarke and Farrend Rawson, the City boss is under no illusions about the sheer volume of the task ahead.
He added: "They are a powerful side, who play route one football with Nile Ranger as a target man. As a spectacle is was a poor game, the worst I’ve seen for a long time.
"The positives were the two centre halves, who headed things. But overall it was disjointed, and we’ve got a lot of work to do.
"It comes from within, hard work. I was holding their hands in the game, we need more nous. We work hard on the training ground, but replicating that on the pitch is the tough thing.
"I understand the fans booing, I’ve been booing in the dressing room. We’ve got to put a marker down and say this has to be the lowest point."