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18:39 2nd January 2012

Danny Jackman


Gillingham began the New Year in the best possible way by defeating Aldershot 1-0 at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium despite having Joe Martin sent off.

Danny Jackman's well-taken strike at the beginning of the second half proved the difference between the sides, moving the Gills up a place to sixth in the league table.

They had to make do without Martin for much of the second half though as he was sent for a second bookable offence after a foul on Jermaine McGlashan.

Aldershot tried to force their way back into the game, but the defence stood firm to see the game out and claim three important points.

Andy Hessenthaler made just one change to the side that lost to Dagenham on Friday evening.

Lewis Montrose entered the fold to replace Jo Kuffour, whose loan spell from Bristol Rovers came to an end before the turn of the year, meaning Danny Kedwell was employed as a lone frontman.

Aldershot made four changes to their team, among them Michael Rankine coming back into the side following suspension.

The game got off to a fairly even start with both teams enjoying good spells of possession, but Martin found himself inside the referee's book inside the first 60 seconds for a foul on Scott Davies.

Neither side conjured up any opportunities in the first ten minutes, but Kedwell was certainly making his presence felt as he chased every loose ball that was played forward.

But the Gills went close in the 17th minute when a Jackman corner was swung towards the far post, Chris Whelpdale managed to flick it on, and Garry Richards very nearly converted from close range.

However the keeper managed to back track and force the ball over the bar for a second corner, which came to nothing as Matt Lawrence - who was later named man of the match - headed wide.

Five minutes later Richards, Weston and Whelpdale combined to create another chance.

The centre-back launched a pass from the right hand side to the opposite flank, Weston played in his midfield colleague, but Whelpdale cut across the ball and shot well over Ross Worner's crossbar.

Aldershot thought they had grounds to claim a penalty on 35 minutes when McGlashan went down in the box as two Gills players went to close him down, but despite the appeals the referee remained unmoved.

The Gills should have gone ahead a minute later though when another Jackman corner found Andy Frampton six yards out, but his powerful header went over the top.

With five minutes to go until the break Luke Guttridge had the first chance of the game for the visitors.

McGlashan robbed Martin of the ball on the right hand side, his shot was blocked and the ball found the midfielder just outside the box, but his well-struck effort went over the top.

H/T: 0-0

With the first attack of the second half the Gills took the lead.

The move started when Lewis Montrose broke into the Aldershot area and found Curtis Weston, his pass found Danny Kedwell but he couldn't get a shot away, and the ball eventually fell to Jackman, who scored his fourth goal of the season with a well-placed shot.

The Gills had switched to a midfield four at the break and it paid instant dividends - but they were almost pegged back with 54 minutes on the clock when Davies floated a corner in to the unmarked Guttridge on the edge of the six-yard box, but he headed over the top.

Gills were reduced to 10 men on 61 minutes when Martin brought down McGlashan on the right-hand side as he approached the by-line, and referee Chris Sarginson took little time in brandishing his yellow and then red cards to dismiss the full back.

Weston nearly made it 2-0 but his effort was dragged wide before two chances in quick succession for the visitors.

Davies' powerful effort was well kept out by Ross Flitney, and he was on hand minutes later to push Peter Vincenti's shot over the top.

The vistors pressed as the clock ran down but the closest they came to getting past the Gills defence came when Guttridge was teed up from another Davies corner, but Lawrence got in the way to block his powerful shot, and the Gills held on to make it three wins in four over the festive period.

Gills: Flitney, Lawrence, Frampton, Richards, Martin, Weston (Lee 83), Whelpdale, J Payne, Jackman, Montrose, Kedwell.

Unused subs: Gazzaniga, Rance, S Payne, Miller.

Aldershot: Worner, Herd, Straker, Guttridge, McGlashan, Rankine (Smith 44), Rodman (Henry 85), Vincenti, Davies, Pearson, Doig (Brown 44).

Unused subs: Young, Day.

Attendance: 5,432 (208 Aldershot)

Referee: Chris Sarginson


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.