We look ahead to tomorrow's League Two encounter
GILLINGHAM v SOUTHEND UNITED
npower League Two
Tuesday September 18 2012
Gillingham manager Martin Allen is expected to be able to select from a fully fit squad for the game against Southend.
Neil Harris, who was a spectator here on Saturday, Luke Prosser, Ryan Leonard, Barry Corr and Freddy Eastwood have all been side-lined through injury for the visitors.
The Gills will be wearing their usual home kit of red shirts with blue sleeves, white shorts and blue socks while Southend are likely to wear yellow shirts, black shorts and yellow socks.
SO FAR THIS SEASON…Southend moved up to eighth in the League Two table following their come from behind victory at Cheltenham Town on Saturday. They have now picked up ten points (three wins and a draw) from their opening six league fixtures of the 2012-13 campaign.
The Shrimpers netted three goals in eight minutes either side of the break through Britt Assombalonga, Sean Clohessy and Mark Phillips in a 3-1 triumph at the Abbey Business Stadium.
Speaking to the Southend official website afterwards boss Paul Sturrock said “We rode our luck a bit in the first half an hour and the goalkeeper had to make two or three saves. Once we got the equaliser we got ourselves in the right areas of the pitch in the second half.
“Footballers in this day and age have to be moved around like Subbuteo men. Once we sorted out the midfield and changed the system a bit then it seemed to work well for us.
“I rattled the cage a wee bit at half-time as I didn’t feel the tempo was right and I felt we had a couple more gears in us and it proved the case. I’m very happy.”
Their season started with three consecutive defeats, these came against Championship side Peterborough United in the Capital One Cup which was followed by Accrington Stanley and Oxford United in the league.
The first point came from a 3-3 draw at Northampton Town on August 25 and a week later the Shrimpers recorded a first win against Wycombe Wanderers at Roots Hall.
AFC Wimbledon were then beaten 2-1 in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy before ten man Dagenham & Redbridge lost 3-1 in an ‘Essex derby’.
LEADING GOALSCORERS…On loan Watford striker Britt Assombalonga took his goal tally to five in Saturday’s game at Cheltenham after extending his loan spell at the club, which was due to expire after the weekend fixture, until January.
Central defender Ryan Cresswell has netted three while ex-Gills Sean Clohessy and Gavin Tomlin along with Mark Phillips have one to their name as has Kane Ferdinand who has since joined Peterborough United for £200,000.
THE LAST TIME HERE…
Paul Sturrock’s outfit won 2-1 when the two sides met in the corresponding game at Priestfield last season in a match covered by Sky Sports on Monday February 13.
A crowd of 4,441 saw Southend take a comfortable two-goal half-time lead through Liam Dickinson and a Joe Martin own goal before Tomlin gave the Gills a glimmer of hope when he reduced the deficit with three minutes remaining.
The move started with Paulo Gazzaniga, who was making his first league start, coolly passing to Jack Evans who found Curtis Weston with a long ball. The midfielder helped it into the path of Tomlin, and the on-loan Dagenham man did the rest, beating three defenders before lashing an unstoppable shot past Morris.
The two teams that night were -
Gills: Gazzaniga, Lawrence (Evans 45), Frampton (Essam 77), Richards, Martin, Montrose (J Payne 45), Weston, Jackman, Tomlin, Kedwell, Kuffour. Unusued subs: Hawkes, Whelpdale.
Southend: Morris, Clohessy, Mohsni, Timlin, Ferdinand, Martin (Hall 67), Phillips, Prosser, Kalala, Dickinson (Sampson 85), Barker. Unused subs: Gilbert, Grant, Harris.
Referee: Phillip Gibbs
Assistant referee’s: Adrian Gillett & Richard Kendall
Fourth Official: David Rock
The West Midlands official has previously taken charge of six games involving the Gills which has seen a mixed bag of results. The first of these was in December 2008 here at Priestfield when Chesterfield were beaten 2-1 thanks to first-half goals from Adam Miller and Simeon Jackson.
Following that he was in the middle for the 2-0 defeat at MK Dons in October 2009 and the goalless draw at Hereford in August 2010.
Since then there have been three wins against Aldershot (2-1 at home in January 2011), Crewe, 2-1 away in August 2011, and the 1-0 FA Cup victory at Leyton Orient in December 2011.
He has officiated in six games so far this season in which he has issued a dozen yellow cards.