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Match Reports

Report | Gillingham 2-2 Doncaster Rovers

Gills fight back from two goals down to secure a point against high-flying Doncaster.

27 April 2024

Match Reports

Report | Gillingham 2-2 Doncaster Rovers

Gills fight back from two goals down to secure a point against high-flying Doncaster.

27 April 2024

Tim Dieng and Josh Andrews both score in the second-half to seal a point on the final day of the season against promotion chasing Doncaster.

Gillingham battled back from two goals down to end their 2023/24 campaign with a 2-2 draw against Doncaster Rovers.

Joe Ironside and Luke Molyneux gave the play-off-bound visitors a two-goal advantage in the first-half before they were reduced to ten men during the second-half.

Thimothee Lo-Tutalu was shown a straight red card in the 55th minute after he deliberately handled outside of the penalty area.

From the resulting free-kick, Tim Dieng blasted an effort beyond Louis Jones, who had to come on in goal. Gills were level five minutes later when Conor Masterson’s looping goalward header was seemingly bundled over the line by Josh Andrews.

Gills went in search of a late winner and came inches away, with Owen Bailey making a goal-saving clearance on the line.

Stephen Clemence made one change to the starting XI following the defeat at Mansfield, as Shad Ogie started in the place of Max Clark, who dropped to the bench. Max Ehmer captained the side on his 400th appearance for the Football Club.

In the fourth minute, Joe Ironside had the first chance of the game. He got on the end of a long ball forward, moving just inside the Gillingham penalty area before shooting. He drilled a low-driven effort goalward, but it was well-saved by Jake Turner, who stood firm in the Gillingham goal.

The visitors continued to apply pressure when Owen Bailey was denied. A ball into the penalty area was held up by Tom Anderson, who laid it off for the forward to shoot. Fortunately, his shot on goal was blocked by a Gillingham defender before the hosts dealt with the second ball.

Tim Dieng forced Thimothee Lo-Tutalu into a save in the 16th minute. Connor Mahoney and Dom Jefferies did well to link up down the right-hand side, playing quick one-twos before Jefferies entered the penalty area. His low-driven cross found Dieng, who had to reset himself before shooting on the turn, with his effort going straight at Lo-Tutalu.

That opportunity sparked some life into the Gills, as a Josh Andrews header caused Lo-Tutalu an issue. Jonny Williams cut inside onto his right foot before curling a cross into the box. Andrews rose above Richard Wood to guide his header goalward, with the Doncaster goalkeeper having to gather the attempt at the second time of asking.

Luke Molyneux tried a speculative effort when a corner was cleared as far as him on the edge of the penalty area. The ball was high and looping down towards the winger, who opted to shoot first-time on the volley. His strike had plenty of power but was straight at Turner, who made the save.

In the 30th minute, Doncaster took the lead. Bailey made his way down the right before curling a cross into the penalty area for the oncoming Ironside, who guided a header past Turner and into the back of the net.

Seven minutes later, Molyneux doubled the visitors' advantage in stunning fashion. The ball came out to the winger on the edge of the penalty area, who cut inside onto his left foot before drilling a left-footed effort into the top corner, leaving an outstretched Turner with no chance of keeping it out.


HALF-TIME: Gillingham 0-2 Doncaster Rovers


Gills looked to find a way back into the game and had two good opportunities. The first came when Dieng glanced a header just wide of the far post. The second was through Andrews. He played a one-two with Jefferies before he got a shot away. However, he was denied by the keeper, who had come off his line to close the angle.

Moments later, the Doncaster goalkeeper was shown a straight red card. A ball was pumped long for Jefferies to chase. It caused issues amongst the Doncaster backline, as Lo-Tutala had come off his line outside the penalty area to deal with it. At the time same, a Doncaster defender attempted to head it back towards his own goal. Lo-Tutala instinctively stuck out a hand to prevent it from going beyond him, but in turn, was shown a straight red card.

From the resulting free-kick, Dieng pulled a goal back. The free-kick from around 20 yards was in a central position, which the midfielder pummelled goalward. It was too hot for Louis Jones to handle in the Doncaster goal, and it ended up in the back of the net.

Five minutes later, Gillingham were level. A corner from the left was curled towards the back post and met by Conor Masterson. The defender looped a header towards the goal, with it going over the head of Jones. Andrews and Anderson were on the line, with the striker seemingly helping to bundle it into the back of the net.

The visitors had a big penalty appeal in the 73rd minute when James Maxwell went down inside the penalty area. He went down after Andrews stuck a leg out, but the referee remained unmoved by it, waving away any appeals for a spot kick.

In the 86th minute, Joe Gbode replaced Jonny Williams as Gillingham went in search of a winning goal.

There was a late scramble inside the six-yard box as Gills pushed for a winner. Jones did well to initially deny Masterson before the ball came back out to Andrews, who was also denied.

Moments later, there was another moment of chaos as the ball was sent goalward. There were appeals for the ball crossing the line, but Bailey cleared it away before it could cross the line, according to the match officials.


FULL-TIME: Gillingham 2-2 Doncaster Rovers


Gillingham: Turner, Hutton, Ehmer, Masterson, Ogie, Dieng, Coleman (Walker 68’), Jefferies, J. Williams (Gbode 86’), Andrews

Unused Substitutes: Morris, Clark, McKenzie, Clarke, Lapslie


Doncaster Rovers: Lo-Tutala, Sterry, Anderson, Wood, Maxwell, Bailey, Craig (Broadbent 80’), Molyneux (Westbrooke 80’), Rowe (Jones 56’), Adelakun (Owulu 64’), Ironside

Unused Substitutes: Nixon, Hurst, Waters


Referee: Alex Chilowicz

Attendance: 8723 (1676 away fans)

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