Neil Harris could welcome a couple of players back to the squad following illnesses.
Gillingham v Colchester United
Sky Bet League Two
MEMS Priestfield Stadium
Monday December 26th
Robbie McKenzie and Lewis Walker are both doubts ahead of the Boxing Day fixture as they continue to recover from their respective injuries. Multiple players were suffering from a virus that hit the squad ahead of the Carabao Cup game at Wolves. There is hope that some players will be able to recover in time ahead of Monday.
Ossama Ashley will miss the game due to suspension, as he was sent off in Colchester’s loss to Sutton. Emyr Huws could return to the starting XI for the Boxing Day clash, having come off the bench in the defeat to Sutton. Former Gills forward John Akinde could feature in the matchday squad, while Kwesi Appiah will likely start in attack.
Neil Harris - “The training plan will have to change over the next few days because we can’t take the risk of spreading the virus. We’ll have to adjust, but we will certainly be ready for Boxing Day. It’s the biggest game of the season, and we will be right up for it and ready.”
Matt Bloomfield - “We want to put on a performance and get a result that they can be proud of.
“I’ve said it several times but thank you to those supporters who haven’t had a huge amount to cheer about and support on the road this season."
The two sides met earlier in the season when they faced off in the Papa John's Trophy at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium. Lewis Walker gave Gillingham the lead a couple of minutes before half-time. He flicked Will Wright’s free-kick beyond Kieran O’Hara and into the bottom corner.
However, that lead lasted a couple of minutes as former Gills striker John Akinde brought the visitors back on level terms. Jake Turner parried a shot away as far as Akinde, who managed to sneak the ball beyond Turner at his near post.
The game went to penalties, where the Gills won 5-4 in sudden death. Marley Marshall-Miranda missed the target with his spot kick, which allowed Jordan Green to score the winning penalty as he calmly slotted it beyond O’Hara.
Gillingham win - 13/10
Draw - 2/1
Colchester United - 11/5
Special Bet: Mikael Mandron to score and Gillingham to win 2-1- 40/1.
Referee - Sam Purkiss
Assistants - Nicholas Cooper and James Vallance
Fourth Official - Charles Breakspear
Boxing Day’s fixture will be available to watch on iFollow for a one-off fee of just £10. BBC Radio Kent will provide full commentary of the game. To purchase, click here.