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27 November 2021 Venue Priestfield Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Gillingham v Pompey

All you need to know about League One contest

26 November 2021

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Gillingham v Pompey

Priestfield Stadium hosts a contest between two sides at opposite ends of the League One form table on Saturday (3pm kick-off).

Pompey impressed in their 3-0 victory at Lincoln earlier in the week – a fifth successive win that extended their unbeaten run to eight games.

Danny Cowley’s men remained ninth in the standings after that result, but closed the gap on the play-off spots to just three points.

Gillingham, meanwhile, are down in 20th position and looking to avoid dropping into the relegation places.

They have not won a game in any competition since a 1-0 home success against fellow strugglers Doncaster in mid-October.

It is a sequence that has seen them collected just three points from a possible 15 and exit both the FA Cup and Papa John’s Trophy.

There is also uncertainty surrounding the future of experienced manager Steve Evans, who is wanted by League Two outfit Stevenage.

Pompey collected four points against the Gills last season, with John Marquis and Michael Jacobs on target in a 2-0 triumph in Kent.

TEAM NEWS
Sean Raggett is serving a one-match ban after collecting his fifth booking of the season at Sincil Bank – just before an amnesty kicked in.

There is a doubt over the availability of John Marquis, who has been struggling with a tendon problem.

Skipper Clark Robertson (hip) is joined by Paul Downing (calf), Jayden Reid (knee) and Ryan Tunnicliffe (hamstring) in the treatment room.

Gillingham are missing Kyle Dempsey (knee), Alex MacDonald (knee) and Vadaine Oliver (ankle), while Rhys Bennett and Danny Lloyd are both carrying knocks.

Former Fratton loanee Stuart O’Keefe is available again for the hosts, however, after completing a one-match suspension.

VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM
Read the thoughts of Danny Cowley and Louis Thompson ahead of the game.

HEAD TO HEAD
Overall
Pompey: 20 wins
Gillingham: 9 wins
10 draws

At Priestfield Stadium
Pompey: 8 wins
Gillingham: 7 wins
4 draws

TICKETS
Tickets are no longer on sale and cannot be bought at Gillingham on the day of the game. Collections will be from the away turnstiles on Priestfield Road.

OFFICIALS
Referee: Dean Whitestone
Assistants: Michael George and Akil Howson
Fourth Official: Charles Breakspear

MATCH COVERAGE
Domestic iFollow subscribers can listen to live commentary from Andrew Moon and Guy Whittingham by signing into their account and visiting the match centre from around 2.45pm on Saturday.

Overseas subscribers and match pass holders can watch the action and commentary will begin from around 10 minutes before kick-off.

Click here for more information about using iFollow on a matchday and click here for information on downloading the app, so you can access content on your mobile device.

We will have updates throughout the game on Twitter and the match centre. You can also see behind-the-scenes content on our Instagram story.

There will be post-match reaction on the website and our official YouTube channel, with highlights to follow on Sunday.

Local listeners can hear commentary by tuning in to either BBC Radio Solent or Express FM.

BETTING
Pompey are the 87/100 favourites with VBET to secure all three points, while the hosts can be backed at 3/1.

Click here to find a comprehensive list of odds for Saturday's game. 18+. Please gamble responsibly.

ALSO IN LEAGUE ONE
All games kick-off at 3pm

Saturday
AFC Wimbledon v Fleetwood
Bolton v Cheltenham
Burton v Doncaster
Cambridge v Sunderland
Lincoln v Accrington
Morecambe v MK Dons
Oxford v Rotherham
Plymouth v Wigan
Sheffield Wednesday v Wycombe
Shrewsbury v Charlton

Sunday
Ipswich v Crewe

LAST SEASON

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Match Reports

Gillingham 0 Pompey 1

Blues leave it late to secure victory at Priestfield

27 November 2021

George Hirst in action for Pompey at Gillingham
Photo: Jason Brown

Pompey scored in the final seconds of stoppage-time to beat Gillingham extend their winning run to six games.

It looked like a contest that was full of effort and desire – if a little short on quality – was going to end all square.

But some good play from substitute Michael Jacobs and a deflection from Jack Tucker saw the Blues find the net right at the death.

Danny Cowley made one change from the side that impressively won away at Lincoln earlier in the week.

With Sean Raggett serving a one-match ban, Louis Thompson returned to the starting line-up and Shaun Williams dropped back into defence.

Lee Brown had completed his own suspension, although a back injury saw him initially named on the bench, only to then be replaced by academy midfielder Harry Jewitt-White.

And with Clark Robertson also still on the sidelines, it meant the captain’s armband was worn by Ronan Curtis.

There were a couple of familiar faces in the hosts’ side, with former Fratton loanees Stuart O’Keefe and John Akinde both starting.

Pompey made a fast start and had a couple of excellent chances to break the deadlock in the opening stages.

George Hirst looked to make the most of a poor Robbie McKenzie header and lifted a shot towards goal, but Jamie Cumming managed to push it against the crossbar.

The ball then hit the arm of Tucker as he tried to clear, but referee Dean Whitestone decided it was not deliberate.

Joe Morrell soon slipped a neat pass through to Hirst, who cut inside and fired in an effort that was beaten away by Cumming.

And the keeper then recovered well to deny Mahlon Romeo after the loose ball fell kindly for the wing-back.

But Gillingham fought their way back into the contest and began to dominate proceedings as the first half progressed.

They were pegging the visitors back into their own half, but without being able to test Gavin Bazunu between the sticks.

Marcus Harness had an opportunity at the other end after being teed-up by Morrell and dragged a shot past the post.

But the Gills had a better chance to forge ahead on 35 minutes, as Akinde held off a couple of challenges and charged forward, only to hit a tame attempt straight at Bazunu.

A couple of low Williams corners in quick succession then found Curtis and Reeco Hackett, but neither could make a clean connection.

Half Time: Gillingham 0 Pompey 0

Just as they had before the break, Pompey started the second half strongly and almost took the lead within three minutes of the restart.

It was a great run from Harness, who saw space open up in front of him before hitting a shot that was excellently palmed away by Cumming.

The ball then ricocheted into the path of O’Keefe, whose low effort was kept out in relatively comfortable fashion by Bazunu.

Gillingham felt they should have been awarded a penalty when Akinde took a tumble over Bazunu just past the hour mark.

But Bazunu had definitely got to the ball just before the striker and Whitestone correctly waved away their noisy appeals.

Cowley made his first substitution soon after that, with Thompson being replaced by Arsenal loanee Miguel Azeez.

And with the contest still delicately poised, a second switch followed on 71 minutes, as Hirst made way for Harrison up front.

The game was lacking a bit of quality, summed up by Danny Lloyd’s wild finish when found in a good position by Akinde.

Pompey’s final change saw Jacobs – who scored at Priestfield last season – come on for Hackett.

And the newcomer had an immediate chance to be the late hero, but could not connect with Morrell’s low cut-back.

There was anger from the Blues when they had the ball on the edge of the Gills box, only for Whitestone to stop the play so Max Ehmer could receive some treatment.

They tried to attack from the resulting drop ball and despite taking a fine first touch, Harness was unable to squeeze his way through the back-line.

And Connor Ogilvie then tried to nod back a Romeo cross for Harrison, but the ball flew just behind the striker.

Then, with just a few seconds of the contest remaining, JACOBS showed some neat skill by the touchline and sent the ball into the centre, where it hit Tucker and flew into the net.

It was arguably harsh for Gillingham, but the large number of travelling fans who had spent the afternoon shivering on the open stand behind the goal did not seem to care.

And there was barely time for the contest to restart before the final whistle blew to lengthen Pompey’s fine run.

Gillingham (4-2-3-1): Cumming; Jackson, Ehmer, Tucker, McKenzie; Adshead (Akehurst 59), O’Keefe (c); Lloyd, Lee, Carayol (Sithole 83); Akinde
Subs not used: Chapman, Lintott, Gale, Gbode

Pompey (3-4-1-2): Bazunu; Freeman, Ogilvie, Williams; Romeo, Thompson (Azeez 64), Morrell, Hackett (Jacobs 81); Harness; Curtis (c), Hirst (Harrison 71)
Goals: Jacobs 90+3
Booked: Romeo
Subs not used: Bass, Vincent, Jewitt-White, Gassan

Referee: Dean Whitestone

Attendance: 5,637 (1,435 Pompey fans)

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