We look ahead to the New Years Day clash at Roots HallSOUTHEND UNITED v GILLINGHAM
npower League Two
Tuesday January 1 2013
TEAM NEWS -
Gills manager Martin Allen has had extra time to prepare for the game in Essex following the postponement of Saturday’s fixture against Northampton.
There are no injury or suspension worries but the Gillingham manager could still make changes as he weighs up his options following the Boxing Day defeat to Barnet.
Meanwhile United are hopeful that Watford loanee Britt Assombalonga will be fit to return having missed the Burton game at the weekend after suffering shin and ankle injuries at Dagenham on Boxing Day.
Mark Phillips, David Martin and Freddy Eastwood all featured as substitutes against the Brewers and could give Southend boss Paul Sturrock alternatives.
THE SEASON SO FAR -
Southend lie fourth in the League Two table having picked up 40 points (11 wins and seven draws) from their previous 25 games.
United are unbeaten in their last six home games, three of which have ended in draws while the Gills have won two, drawn two and lost two of their last six matches on their travels.
While the Gills home game with Northampton was called off on Saturday, the Shrimpers saw their unbeaten league run of 10 games (14 overall) ended in a 2-0 loss at Burton.
Following the loss at the Pirelli, boss Sturrock felt his side had paid the price for being overconfident but was already looking forward to the Gills visit, he said: “I'm sure I'll get a different kind of reaction and attitude from the players for that game.
“It was a bad day at the office at Burton but I actually wish the Gillingham game could've kicked off five minutes after that one ended because we want to get back on the rails again.
“There's no shame in one defeat in 15 matches and people have to realise we are going to lose matches between now and the end of the season.
“We obviously hope it's not going to be very many but it will happen and it's how we react to it that's important.
“We've just been on a really good run of form and now we want to try and go on another one.”
LEADING GOALSCORERS -
Gillingham’s stats haven’t changed recently with Danny Kedwell leading the list of 17 different scorers having hit the net 11 times.
Former Gillingham loanee Gavin Tomlin is the Shrimpers leading goalscorer with 14 goals this season while Britt Assombalonga has a dozen to his name.
Central defender has netted eight times and next on the list is Kevan Hurst who has scored four.
EARLIER THIS SEASON -
Back in September the Gills put in a tremendous ‘backs to the wall’ performance to beat the Shrimpers by a solitary goal at MEMS Priestfield Stadium.
Danny Kedwell crashed home the only goal of the game from the penalty spot in the 11 minutes of time added on before the break after Shrimpers keeper Paul Smith had been stretchered off early on.
However the Gills were forced into a rearguard action when young midfielder Bradley Dack was dismissed just after the goal.
Gills – Nelson, Fish, Martin, Whelpdale, Lee (Dack 6), Kedwell, Allen (Strevens 73), Davies, Burton (Frampton 54), Barrett, Wright Unused subs: Flanagan, , Montrose, Birchall, Forecast
United – Smith (Bentley 17), Clohessy, Cresswell, Timlin, Martin (Benyon 76), Hurst, Phillips (Straker H/T), Spicer, Assombalonga, Tomlin Barker Unused subs:, Coughlan, Eastwood, , Woodyard, Njie
Referee – Andy Woolmer
Assistants – Nicholas Cooper & Adrian Sannerude
Fourth Official – Stephen Rubery
The Northamptonshire referee’s last took charge of a Gills game back in November - the 4-0 home FA Cup success over League One Scunthorpe United
This season he has issued 47 yellow and three red cards in his 18 games.