Report | Ebbsfleet United 2-0 Gillingham

Impressive Ebbsfleet secure victory in pre-season friendly at Stonebridge Road.

Goals from Sean Shields and Ebou Adams either side of half-time helped secure a 2-0 win for Ebbsfleet over Gillingham on Saturday afternoon.

Shields took advantage of a loose ball inside the box to give Fleet the advantage before Adams produced a sensational effort to beat Hadler from 10 yards when it looked impossible to make any contact.

List and Rees had opportunities late on to get Gills back in the game, but the home defence stood firm and kept their clean sheet.

Steve Lovell named a strong side for the game at Stonebridge Road with Alex Lacey, Bradley Garmston, Billy Bingham, Dean Parrett and Elliott List all included within the starting XI.

Noel Mbo and Darren Oldaker provided some attacking options from the subs bench.

Familiar faces in Ebbsfleet’s squad included midfielders Jack Payne and Myles Weston with striker Danny Kedwell named in the starting XI.

Gills went for goal from the first whistle, an attempt to lob Ashmore was thwarted, but only just, as the keeper tracked back to tip over.

Ebbsfleet had a couple of half chances in the first 15 minutes with Shields unable to take advantage of a loose ball inside the penalty area before the same player was thwarted by Hadler from close range as Powell had two bites of the cherry from a free-kick.

At the other end Ashmore had to be alert to parry an effort wide for a corner, but clear cut opportunities were few and far between.

That was until the 31st minute when the hosts took the lead. A low ball from the right caught out O’Mara with the ball striking his leg before it rolled kindly into the path of Shields who did well to beat the oncoming Hadler.

The winger was proving tricky to handle on the left and before the break had a chance to double the lead; he ran at O’Mara and found a yard of space in which to unleash a shot. Hadler looked to have it covered but Reilly stuck out a leg before it could get to him and Gills cleared.

List had a header comfortably saved by Ashmore towards the end of the half from O’Neill’s cross.

H/T: 1-0

With just a few minutes on the clock in the second period Ebbsfleet bagged a second. A cross from the right was aimed towards Adams; it looked unlikely he would get an effort away, let alone score, but he adjusted his body well and made sufficient contact with his trailing leg which surprised Hadler and the ball nestled in the top corner.

Fleet looked fairly comfortable in defence with List and Hanlan struggling to make an impact despite their obvious pace. Shields continued to cause problems and from a free-kick came close to making it three; his header coming off a Gills player before a shot from 20 yards went narrowly wide.

Before Shields departed he had one final chance; cutting in from the left to make space for a shot but on this occasion he got underneath the ball and fired his effort well wide of the target.

On 78 minutes Gills had a chance to bring themselves back into the game. A corner from the ever reliable O’Neill found Rees sprinting in towards the penalty spot, and although he was first to it, the header was comfortably wide of the target.

List had two opportunities in the last couple of moments; a drilled left footed effort was well blocked by Ashmore before his header from the resulting corner went well wide.

F/T: 2-0

Ebbsfleet: Aimmore, King, Clark (Magri 29), Powell (McQuee 65), Adams, Kedwell, Payne, Shields (Weston 78), Whiteley (Coulson 78), Wilson, Bush (Graham 78)

Unused subs: Miles

Gills: Hadler, O'Neill, O'Mara (Huckle 72), Lacey, Garmston, Bingham, Rees, Reilly (Oldaker 79), Parrett (Chapman 79), List, Hanlan (Mbo 79)

Unused subs: Chalmers-Stevens

Attendance: 1004