Southend United moved within two points of the League One play-off places on Monday with a 3-1 victory over table-topping Burton Albion at Roots Hall.
Back-to-back league defeats against Scunthorpe United and Bradford City meant Phil Brown's men were struggling for form ahead of the leaders' visit to Essex but Anthony Wordsworth's precise finish eight minutes in got the hosts off to a flyer.
Nigel Clough's men were level before half-time through Stuart Beavon's deflected strike, as they sought to hold off the challenge of second-placed Wigan Athletic, who moved within four points of top spot when they beat Walsall on Saturday.
Southend, though, were not to be denied a victory that gets their play-off push back on track as Tyrone Barnett restored their lead in impressive fashion with a long-range effort into the top right-hand corner just after the hour mark.
The points were sealed when substitute David Mooney capped a quick counter in the last minute of time to move Southend up to seventh, two points off Coventry City in the final play-off spot, the Sky Blues having played a game more.