The Gills host MK Dons in the last home fixture of 2016
Sky Bet League One
MEMS Priestfield Stadium
Saturday, December 17
Referee: Brett Huxtable
Assistants: Carl Fitch-Jackson and Louis Marks
Fourth official: David Rock
Justin Edinburgh’s team face MK Dons on Saturday in Sky Bet League One.
Tickets are still available for this Christmas Special fixture from just £5, and you can buy yours buy clicking here.
Gills manager Justin Edinburgh confirmed that both Billy Knott and Darren Oldaker returned to training this week following injuries picked up against Rochdale and VCD in the Kent Senior Cup respectively.
Off the back of two home games on the bounce at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium, Edinburgh said: “We have a chance to get some momentum going. We played on Monday, and haven’t had to wait too long to play again, then we get some games in quick succession.
“We have been showing good signs of progression at home. We’ve had some good results and good performances and that is what we want to keep doing; continue our home form.”
MK Dons have won their last two matches under new manager Robbie Neilson, and Edinburgh believes they will come into the Sky Bet League One clash with confidence.
“We expect them to play. They will be buoyed - they’ve had some decent results as of late, and followed up the 1-0 win over AFC Wimbledon [last Saturday] with a midweek cup victory [over Charlton Athletic].
“They’re high in confidence, but, take the Bolton result out of the equation, and were not too far away ourselves.”
Edinburgh also said that long-term absentees Aaron Morris and Lee Martin should be back to full training before first scheduled.
MK Dons have never won at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium, however new boss Neilson expects his team to pick up their third victory in a row on Saturday.
The Gills sit just one place above MK, and with just two points separating the sides, Neilson’s team could leapfrog their opponents with a win on Saturday.
"They're a good team," said Neilson. "They're strong through the middle of the park, so it'll be tough, but it's one we expect to go down there and win.
“We have got two [wins] now, and I want to carry it on at Gillingham. It'll be a huge game for us. It's alright doing it [getting results] at home, but going away are the games that decide whether you finish mid-table or at the bottom.”
Jay Emmanuel-Thomas and George Williams may line-up against each other at the weekend, however both were playing for their respective opponents in the Championship and League One last season.
LAST TIME WE MET
The last meeting between the two clubs came at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium back in February 2015, when the Gills ran out 4-2 winners. Edinburgh’s men raced into an early lead through Cody McDonald, and MK drew level through Devante Cole on 36 minutes, however Bradley Dack’s goal two minutes later ensured the Gills went into half-time 2-1 up.
Ben Reeves’ 67th-minute penalty pegged the Gills back once more, but goals from Bradley Garmston and John Marquis ensured the home side took maximum points from the promotion hopefuls with a 4-2 victory. You can watch the highlights below:
The teams have met nine times in total, with the Gills winning five, drawing one and losing three.
FANCY A FLUTTER?
Gills win – 19/10
Draw – 12/5
MK Dons win–7/5
For all the latest match odds visit Sky Bet.
GillsPlayer will have live match commentary from 3pm with Ben Watts and Peter Lloyd.
The GillsWall will have interactive text commentary of the match, and the club’s social media channels will be bringing you live updates throughout the day.
SATURDAY'S SKY BET LEAGUE ONE FIXTURES
AFC Wimbledon v Port Vale
Bury v Oxford United
Charlton v Peterborough
Chesterfield v Bolton
Northampton v Rochdale
Oldham v Southend
Scunthorpe v Millwall
Shrewsbury v Bristol Rovers
Swindon Town v Fleetwood
Walsall v Bradford City