We look ahead to Saturday's League Two gameGILLINGHAM v MORECAMBE
npower League Two
Saturday November 17 2012
MEMS Priestfield Stadium
There was good and bad news emanating from this afternoon’s press conference. Gills manager Martin Allen revealed that while both Charlie Allen (hand) and Charlie Lee (virus) have both returned to the squad, fellow midfielder Jack Payne looked like missing out with a twisted ankle picked up in training.
Bradley Dack has returned to training following his foot bruising but the Morecambe game comes too soon for him.
Left-back Joe Martin (hand) is back in non-contact training but is two-three weeks away from a first-team return.
Barry Roche (knock) returned to action in midweek while Will Haining (calf) and Robbie Threlfall (thigh) were both fit enough to be on the bench, however leading scorer Jack Redshaw (calf) was again missing.
Danny Carlton (knee) remains a long-term injury absentee and left-back Jordan Mustoe has returned to Wigan Athletic following his one-month loan spell at the Globe Arena.
THE SEASON SO FAR…
Morecambe arrive here in Kent this afternoon lying 15th in the table having picked up 22 points (six wins and four draws) from their 17 league games.
Three of Morecambe’s half-dozen wins have come on their travel’s, these were at Exeter City, 3-0 on the opening day of the season, Bristol Rovers (3-0) and Rochdale (2-1) while another point was picked up from a goalless draw at Aldershot.
Last Saturday Jim Bentley’s side recorded their biggest home win of the season beating Mark Robson’s Barnet 4-1. Kevin Ellison and Andy Fleming put the home side in the driving seat with two goals in the opening ten minutes before Richard Brodie wrapped things up with a late brace of penalties. It was the Shrimps third home win of the campaign.
On Tuesday night the Shrimps travelled to Spotland and recorded a 1-0 win in their FA Cup First Round replay against League Two rivals Rochdale. They now face a trip to Coventry City in Round Two.
Midfielder Gary McDonald scored the only goal just before the break and after the game boss Jim Bentley told BBC Radio Lancashire "It doesn't matter how you get through in the Cup, it's all about the result and we got that result.
"Financially it's great for us - I think it's about £18,000 to get into the next round. We've got a nice tasty tie now at Coventry. The pressure will be off us.
"As players, there's nothing better than the FA Cup. It's just fantastic to get the result and I'm made up for everyone concerned."
In the Capital One Cup Morecambe won 2-1 in their ‘derby’ at Blackpool in the First Round before losing 2-0 at Premier League Sunderland in Round Two.
In the Johnstone's Paint Trophy Accrington Stanley were beaten 2-0 at the Crown Ground in the Northern Section First Round but then Preston ran out 4-2 away winners next time out.
Adam Barrett became the 16th different scorer for the Gills this season with his late leveller at Home Park last Saturday while Ben Strevens took his tally to two earlier in the game.
Danny Kedwell continues to lead the way for the Gills with 11 goals with fellow strikers Deon Burton (six) and Myles Weston (four) and Chris Whelpdale (three) coming next on the list.
Currently leading the Shrimps scoring chart is former Manchester City forward Jack Redshaw, the 21-year-old has six goals to his name.
Next on the list are the trio of Richard Brodie, Kevin Ellison and Andrew Fleming all with five while Lewis Alessandra and Gary McDonald have both netted twice.
Stewart Drummond, Nick Fenton and Izak Reid have scored one apiece as has on-loan Wigan Athletic defender Jordan Mustoe who may be involved today depending on whether a new deal could be worked out with the Latics as his initial month ended last weekend.
THE LAST TIME HERE…
Morecambe last came to town on the final day of the 2011-12 League Two campaign when two goals from Charlie Lee settled the encounter. It was far from being a classic with relatively few chances at either end.
Jordan Burrow twice went close in the opening stages but the Gills midfielder opened the scoring in the 18th minute with a low left-foot strike from around 20-yards.
Joe Martin and Jo Kuffour, the latter being denied by a great save from Barry Roche, for the Gills and Niall Cowperthwaite plus Burrow again, for the visitors, failed to take further opportunities.
The second goal arrived in the 76th minute, Lee moving onto a neat through-ball from Danny Jackman to slot home his second.
Jack Payne then cleared a Chris McGready effort off the line which proved to be the midfielder’s last action as young Alex Brown came on to replace him for his senior debut in the closing stages.
Gills: Gazzaniga, Fish, Frampton, Essam, Martin, Montrose (Spiller 62), J Payne (Brown 84), Lee, Jackman, Kedwell, Kuffour (Vine 71) Unused subs: Flitney, King
Morecambe: Roche, Haining (Cowperthwaite 24), Reid, Hunter, Alessandra (Mwaslie 68), Burrow, McCready, McDonald, Parrish, Redshaw (Parkinson 57), Carlton Unused subs: Kettings, McGee.
There have only been six previous meetings since the Shrimps won promotion into the Football League for the 2008-09 campaign.
That first one, on October 11 2008, saw goals from Mark Bentley, Simeon Jackson (2), Mark McCammon and a Dave Artell own goal help the Gills to a 5-0 triumph here at Priestfield.
Later that season Curtis Weston hit the only goal of the game at Christie Park.
In 2010-11 both games ended 1-1, Craig Stanley and Danny Spiller netting at the Globe in August while Phil Jevons and Cody McDonald were on target in the April return.
Morecambe’s only victory over the Gills came at the Globe Arena in October 2011, Garry Hunter and Kevin Ellison put the home side two-up before Frank Nouble converted a late consolation with a last minute penalty.
Referee – Tim Robinson
Assistant Referee’s – Andy Newbold & Adrian Sannerude
Fourth Official – Geoffrey Russell
This is Tim’s first season on the Football League list and in his ten previous games this season the West Sussex official has issued one red and 23 yellow cards in his ten games.