Charlie Kelman’s terrific double helped Southend come from behind to beat Stevenage 2-1 in an engrossing Carabao Cup tie at the Lamex Stadium.
Dean Parrett’s sublime left-foot finish from 20 yards saw the hosts take an early lead, but 17-year-old Kelman scored twice within the opening 10 minutes of the second half to see Southend through to the second round.
The League One visitors made a flying start, Stephen McLaughlin stinging Paul Farman’s palms with a well-struck effort to signal the Shrimpers’ intent.
Their early momentum was pierced clinically by Parrett, though, with an instinctive turn and strike to open his account after returning to the Lamex from Gillingham this summer.
The goal lit a spark in Dino Maamria’s side, and Kurtis Guthrie could have doubled the lead soon after but poked wide from three yards.
That miss soon proved costly, Kelman getting his head on the end of a pinpoint cross from Elvis Bwomono seconds after the restart to make it 1-1.
The teenager was then teed up by Nathan Ralph before finding a pocket of space and smashing the ball past Farman, as Southend held on for their first win in the EFL Cup since beating Bristol City back in 2010.