The Gills fight hard with ten men to claim a point at Priestfield.
Ten-man Gillingham stood strong for over 80 minutes as they earnt a well-deserved point in a 0-0 draw against Swindon at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium on Saturday.
Haji Mnoga was sent off for a second yellow card in the opening ten minutes. Scott Kashket, who was awarded Man of the Match, came closest for Gills at the end of the first half as he hit the post from a tight angle.
Neil Harris made multiple changes after the midweek defeat to Charlton as Glenn Morris returned in goal. Captain Stuart O’Keefe returned in midfield, while Haji Mnoga made his full debut after signing on loan from Portsmouth on deadline day.
Gills started positively as they pressed Swindon deep in their half. Ben Reeves intercepted a pass and played the ball to Mikael Mandron on the left. He got 20 yards from goal before shooting, but a Swindon defender managed to block the effort.
Moments later, Mnoga was sent off for a second yellow card. He had committed a professional foul in the opening minutes, and his second came after he had a shot from distance blocked. He chased down the man with the ball before tackling him from behind, leaving the referee with no choice but to brandish a second yellow.
Jonny Williams had a good opportunity for the visitors in the 39th minute. He managed to control a ball into the box to him before getting beyond two Gills players. Williams opted to shoot with plenty of power but cleared the crossbar.
Scott Kashket was inches away from giving Gillingham the lead shortly afterwards. Elkan Baggott played a through ball for the forward to latch onto. He made his way into the box as he was making his mind up on what to do. He did well to keep it from the Swindon defenders before shooting at the near post. It beat Sol Brynn but came off the outside of the post.
Frazer Blake-Tracy almost gave Swindon the lead during first-half stoppage time. The visitors went short from a corner before sending a cross towards the six-yard box. Blake-Tracy got his head on it and sent it goalward. Morris did well to react and palm it away before Gills cleared their lines.
HALF-TIME: Gillingham 0-0 Swindon Town
In the opening 15 minutes of the second half, Gills remained strong as they restricted Swindon to just half chances. Kashket was using his pace to press from the front and caused the visitors issues at the back.
Luke Jephcott had a golden chance to give Swindon the lead in the 76th minute. A deep corner was headed towards the six-yard box by Blake-Tracy. Jephcott managed to get a leg out to stick it goalward. Fortunately, he cleared the crossbar from just a few yards out.
Tyrese Shade forced a big save from Morris with ten minutes to go. He cut inside from around 20 yards out before curling a fierce shot towards the goal. Morris had to get both hands on the shot to palm it wide before Gills dealt with the second ball.
Morris had to deny Shade again with a couple of minutes of normal time remaining. He received the ball 20 yards from goal and shot towards the target with a low-driven effort. It took a deflection on its way, but Morris did well to react and get down to push it behind the post.
FULL-TIME: Gillingham 0-0 Swindon Town
Gillingham: Morris, Mnoga, Ehmer, Baggott, Law, Williams, O’Keefe, Kashket (Wright 79’), Reeves (MacDonald 72’), Adelakun (Tutonda 90’), Mandron (Walker 72’)
Unused Substitutes: Turner, Green
Swindon Town: Brynn, Clayton, MacDonald, Blake-Tracy, Lavinier, Gladwin, Reed, Khan (Darcy 62’), Shade, Wakeling (Jephcott 54’), Williams
Unused Substitutes: Brann, Hutton, Baudry, Aguair, Brennan
Referee: Martin Woods
Attendance: 4927 (671 Swindon Town fans)