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Match Previews


6 February 2014

We look ahead to the Gills trip to Cumbria

Brunton Park
Sky Bet League One
Saturday February 8
Kick-Off, 3pm

Team News:

Amine Linganzi has a good chance of returning to the starting line-up after recovering from tendonitis. Danny Kedwell (hernia) definitely misses out but Chris Whelpdale may make the 18 after finally overcoming his ankle problem.

Elliott Hewitt serves a one match ban following his sending off against Stevenage, so Michael Harriman is likely to be his replacement at right back.

Charlie Lee has regained fitness and should keep his place in the squad.

Jake Hessenthaler will be looking to retain his place in the squad after signing a new long term contract at the club - exclusive video interview here.

As for Carlisle, defenders Connor Townsend (foot) and Chris Chantler (ankle) remain on the treatment table. Skipper Paul Thirlwell is also a doubt with a calf strain.

Manager Comments:

Peter Taylor says his team must learn from previous matches and start to cut out some of the mistakes that have resulted in goals being conceded.

He knows Graham Kavanagh well and believes the Carlisle players are enjoying him being at the helm.

Speaking to the club’s website he said: “Carlisle, like ourselves, are not safe yet so we need to make sure that we start improving on the things that we keep doing wrong.

“Graham is a good lad; he has done very well and is well respected by his players and they seem to enjoy playing for him.”

Kavanagh added: “We’ll look at the group and make our decisions over the next few days. Whoever is selected they all know that we need to be picking up results.”

The Gaffer – Graham Kavanagh

Graham, a tenacious central midfield player, began his professional footballing career at Middlesbrough in 1991. He would stay at the Riverside for six years, however after making just 35 league appearances, moved to Stoke following a short loan stint at Darlington.

It was at Stoke where he showed his true capabilities, playing in over 200 matches before being snapped up by Cardiff City.

Spells at Wigan, Sunderland and Sheffield Wednesday followed before joining Carlisle in October 2008 on an initial one month’s loan.

He joined permanently a few months later as player-coach, and after supporting Paul Abbott as Assistant Manager, took the hot seat earlier this season.

He has also represented the Republic of Ireland National side on 16 occasions, scoring once against Sweden in April 1999.

The Skipper – Paul Thirlwell

The Club Captain has a wealth of experience under his belt having played for Sunderland in the Premiership between 1999 and 2003.

His calm, controlling influence in midfield has made him one of the squad’s key players since he signed from Derby County, initially on loan in 2006, and has made over 200 appearances for the club since then.

Paul may miss Saturday’s game due to injury.

Star Man – David Amoo

David is Carlisle’s top goal scorer coming in to this game having netted 11 times in all competitions.

The 22-year-old striker, who can also play in midfield or on the wing, has impressed this season having signed on a two-year contract from Tranmere in the summer.

He has only scored once in his last six outings, but given some momentum, he is a potentially dangerous threat.

Carlisle – the season so far

Having gone the first seven games of the season in all competitions without a win, Carlisle were immediately playing catch up under the management of Greg Abbott.

The Cumbrians chose to replace Abbott in early September, promoting Kavanagh in to the hot seat shortly after.

He has guided the team away from the drop zone, although only three points separate Carlisle from Shrewsbury Town who occupy the final relegation spot.

The Cumbrians have enjoyed good and bad spells since Kavanagh took over, and they come in to this game having won just once in their last six outings – that coming against MK Dons in a 3-0 win at the end of last month at Brunton Park.

In the cup competitions Carlisle were knocked out of the Capital One Cup in the second round after a 5-2 defeat to Championship leaders Leicester City.

In the JPT they again suffered defeat at the second hurdle after losing 2-0 to Fleetwood, and in the FA Cup Kavanagh's men lost in the third round after a 3-1 loss at Premiership side Sunderland.

Previous Meetings:

The clubs last met earlier this season when Danny Kedwell’s 63rd minute penalty was enough to clinch all three points in a close affair at MEMS Priestfield Stadium in early November.

In a game which produced few clear cut chances, the Gills number nine smashed home a routine spot kick to earn a 1-0 victory.

In total the sides have met on 47 separate occasions. Of those Gills have won 20, Carlisle have registered 17 victories and the remaining 10 games have been a draw.


Gils haven’t beaten Carlisle away from home since 1993 when two Nicky Forster goals were enough to take all three points back to Priestfield in a 2-1 win.

For that stat to change, Sky Bet are offering odds of 9/4. A Carlisle victory delivers a price of 23/10, while a draw is 21/20.

Cody McDonald has scored in six successive games now, and for him to open the scoring and the Gills to win 1-0, you can get odds of 40/1.

For McDonald to grab a brace, the price is 10/1 while Steven Gregory is 16/1 to register the first goal.

To register an account and make your bet for the game, click here.


Assistants - Paul Hodskinson and Kevin Mattocks
Fourth Official - Simon Clayton

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