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Match Previews


27 December 2012

We look ahead to the weekend fixture

npower League Two
Saturday December 29 2012
MEMS Priestfield Stadium
Kick-off: 3.00pm

After the Barnet defeat Gillingham manager Martin Allen said he and all his players were ‘wounded’ but there are no other injury or suspension problems ahead of Saturday’s home game.

Northampton saw their Boxing Day game at AFC Wimbledon called off due to a waterlogged pitch but manager Aidy Boothroyd immediately looked towards the trip here at the weekend. He told the Town website “Every cloud has a silver lining though. There were a few of the lads nursing knocks who might not have played, while Luke Guttridge was set to be in the squad for the first time since recovering from injury and he will have a few more days to prepare.”

The Cobblers are currently 11th in the League Two table having picked up 33 points (nine wins and six draws) from their 23 games.

Previously on their travels Northampton have won two, drawn four and lost five times. The victory’s came at Accrington Stanley (4-2) and Dagenham & R (1-0) while single points were gained at Burton Albion (3-3), Rochdale (0-0), Torquay United (1-1) and York City (1-1). They have suffered defeats at Barnet, Bristol Rovers, Fleetwood Town, Oxford United and Plymouth Argyle.

Seventeen different players have scored for the Gills so far this season with Danny Kedwell (11) continuing to lead the way. Fellow striker Deon Burton is two behind him while Myles Weston has netted five times.

The man currently leading the Cobblers scoring chart will require little introduction to Gillingham supporters as it is Adebayo Akinfenwa. The striker, who has netted 14 times so far this season, is likely to return having missed the Aldershot game through suspension. Fellow striker Alex Nicholls had grabbed eight goals before suffering his season-long injury while David Artell, Kelvin Langmead and Clive Platt all have four to their name.

The Gills maintained their 100% away league record with an impressive 2-1 victory over the Cobblers on a wet and windy night at Sixfields Back back in early October.

Deon Burton and Jack Payne struck either side of half-time to put Martin Allen’s side comfortably ahead before Adebayo Akinfenwa reduced the deficit late on.

Town: L Nicholls, Johnson (East 66), Widdowson, Guttridge (Hackett 8), Langmead, Demontagnac (Moult 77), Akinfenwa, Tozer, A Nicholls, Artell, Roofe. Unused subs: Higgs, Charles, Platt, Mukendi.

Gills: Nelson, Fish, Martin, Flanagan, Barrett, Wright, Payne (Frampton 68), Whelpdale (Weston 57), Allen, Kedwell, Burton (Findley 74). Unused subs: Forecast, Davies, Montrose, Strevens.

This is the 50th meeting between the two sides here at Priestfield with the Gills have previously won 25 and drawn seven of them.

Referee – Graham Salisbury
Assistants – Carl Brook & Richard Kendall
Fourth Official – Neil Hair

The Lancashire official has refereed 23 games this season in which he has issued four red and 77 yellow cards.

Graham’s last game in charge of a Gills game was the goalless draw with Macclesfield Town at Moss Rose in December 2011.

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