Southend manager Sol Campbell praised the mentality of his Shrimpers side as they ended a turbulent week with a 3-1 win against Bristol Rovers.
The senior members of the Southend squad are still waiting to receive their wages for February.
But Campbell was pleased to see the Shrimpers end a run of six successive defeats with a well deserved victory.
“It’s a pat on the back for the lads,” said Campbell.
“It’s slightly split as some have been paid but some haven’t so for them to put that to one side and play football is testament to their good mentality.
“It’s massive for us really.
“We worked really hard in the week and I told the guys to just go for it.
“I wanted us to be on the front foot and that’s what you have to do with so many young guys in the team.
“But this result has been coming and the lads all played really well.”
Rovers, who have now triumphed just once in 18 games, came close to taking an early lead when Alfie Kilgour headed against the left post.
But Southend hit back and broke the deadlock in the 18th minute when Charlie Kelman sent a low 25 yard shot into the bottom left hand corner of the net.
Rovers replied immediately after half-time when Jayden Mitchell-Lawson capitalised on a mistake from Elvis Bwomono to charge through on goal and score with an assured low finish.
However, struggling Southend regained the lead in the 55th minute when Terrell Egbri netted the first senior goal of his career, firing home a fine left wing cross from Eren Kinali.
The Shrimpers then wrapped up their win in the 79th minute as Kilgour diverted Stephen McLaughlin’s cross into his own net.
Despite the victory, Southend remain second from bottom in the League One standings, 15 points from safety.
And Rovers boss Ben Garner was frustrated to see his own side’s slump in form continue.
“I really didn’t see that coming and I’m bitterly, bitterly disappointed,” said Garner.
“I will stand up and take the flak.
“It’s my responsibility but it has to improve.
“It’s going to be a tough end to the season but we’ve got to keep going to turn things around.
“I’ve got to demand more and try to get more too.
“I’m very disappointed and angry. Last week was bad and we spoke about how we needed a reaction.
“They’ve said the right things but they haven’t shown the right things.
“A number of those players are playing for their futures and this is just not good enough.
“There will be changes moving forward.”