We look ahead to the weekend's league fixtureGillingham v Brentford
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MEMS Priestfield Stadium
Saturday August 17
Martin Allen revealed in his midweek press conference that, apart from one unnamed player, he has a fully fit squad to choose from ahead of Brentford’s visit.
Matt Fish was helped off in the early stages against Colchester and will be out of action for at least six months so Michael Harriman will continue at right back.
The on loan QPR defender has been away on international duty with the Republic of Ireland U21 side this week, but he returned to the club on Thursday and should take his place in the starting 11.
Amine Linganzi has also been away with the Congolese National side, his physical condition is unknown but, if fit, should be named in the match day squad.
Charlie Allen and Bayo Akinfenwa had slight knocks ahead of the trip to Molineux last Saturday, but with neither having had further problems, should at least make the bench.
Charlie Lee will start the game as announced by Martin in his press conference, which you can watch by clicking here.
As for Brentford they have no new injury concerns ahead of the game. Defender Tony Craig started last weekend against the Blades and is expected to keep his place in the heart of defence.
Will Grigg is likely to be the Bees main goal threat – he netted twice last weekend against United and scored 20 goals for Walsall in all competitions last season.
He too has been on international duty this week – he became the club’s first Northern Ireland representative in 60 years when he came off the bench in the 86th minute against Russia at Windsor Park on Wednesday evening.
Martin spent two seasons as Brentford Manager (2004-06) and guided the club to successive play-off finishes, while also enjoying back to back FA Cup runs after reaching the fifth round twice.
Martin admitted it’s a club he has fond memories of, and is looking forward to welcoming the supporters to MEMS Priestfield Stadium.
He said: “They will go up, there is no doubt about that – it was a freak moment last year when the ball hit the crossbar and the kid went and scored [for Doncaster] to knock them out of an automatic place.
“The Wembley game would have been a bit of disappointment after that, as often happens, after what had happened to them in the league on that final day.
“Since then they have signed seven new players, so let’s not kid ourselves they have a fantastic setup behind the scenes. They will be a big club and Matthew Benham [Brentford’s Owner] has invested heavily and has put it all in to place from a lower level.
“They will go up – I don’t know who will be Champions but it will be either them or Wolves, but one of them will be. We all need to be on absolute top form for when these types of clubs come to us and don’t under-estimate them.
“They have invested to a different level and they are ready to compete in the Championship. We need to be ready, united and give a good account of ourselves.”
Uwe Rosler’s Brentford haven’t lost against the Gills since March 2007, and the former Manchester City striker said his team need to concentrate and treat the game as seriously as the Sheffield United match.
He said: “They play to their strengths but we want to play our way – it’s important that we pay attention and cope with their threat but also that we don’t lose our identity in terms of what we stand for.
“Those qualities we have can cause them problems.”
Start to the Season:
The Gills come in to the game looking for their first points of the campaign after defeats to Colchester and Wolves, whereas Brentford are yet to taste defeat after getting a point against Port Vale on the opening day prior to a fantastic 3-1 home win over Sheffield United last Saturday.
As for the first round of the Capital One Cup, the Gills were knocked out by Bristol City after a 2-0 loss at MEMS Priestfield Stadium, but Brentford will take on Derby County at Pride Park towards the end of the month after beating Dagenham and Redbridge at home in their first round tie.
The teams last clashed on February 6 2010 when Brentford ran out convincing 4-0 winners at Griffin Park thanks to two goals from Charlie MacDonald and, ironically, a brace from our very own Myles Weston.
In total the clubs have played each other on 85 occasions with Brentford having won 34 times, the Gills with 32, and the remaining 19 fixtures have resulted in a draw.
Referee – Gavin Ward
Assistant Referee 1 - Carl Fitch
Assistant Referee 2 - Michael George
Fourth Official - Lee Venamore