Ahead of Ady Pennock’s first game as head coach I was asked to write a match preview containing information on both the Gills and their opponents, Oldham Athletic. The article had to be written in the template the club already had planned. This article was also posted onto the Gillingham official website and you can access that by clicking here.
Also see Ady Pennock’s thoughts on the upcoming game by clicking here
The Gills travel to Oldham Athletic in Sky Bet League One on Saturday, January 14, 3pm kick-off
Sky Bet League One
Saturday, January 14
Referee: Dean Whitestone
Assistants: James Bell and Stephen Wade
Fourth Official: Mark Brown
Ady Pennock’s team face Oldham Athletic in his first game in charge of the Gills on Saturday in Sky Bet League One.
Tickets are still available for this eagerly-anticipated match, and can be purchased in advance (prior to Friday morning) online by clicking here. Fans can buy on the gate in Greater Manchester, but should note a price increase; full details can be found here.
Pennock stated in his pre-match press conference on Thursday that three or four unidentified players are suffering from an illness.
The head coach said: “We’ve got another 48 hours to go so we will be assessing them Friday evening.”
Aside from those who are doubtful, Pennock confirmed there are no fresh injury concerns ahead of the trip.
Billy Knott is expected to make a full return after featuring on the bench against Oxford United on January 2. The midfielder has been out with a hamstring injury since late November, but looks set to bolster Pennock’s attacking options for this game.
“Like I said when I first got the job, we need to hit the ground running and it’ll be great if we can get the three points [on Saturday],” added Pennock. “It’s going to be tough but we’ve got to go there and more concentrate on us than anything else. If we get those three points then I’ll be very, very pleased.”
Stephen Robinson was sacked as Oldham manager on Thursday afternoon following the 2-0 loss to Mansfield Town in the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday night.
He was replaced on the same day by John Sheridan, who returns for his third spell in charge of the club. Latics chairman Simon Corney said: “John is obviously someone we know well and we hope he can have an immediate effect on our current situation.
“Unfortunately things have not worked out for him [Robinson] or the club,” added Corney, “We felt that a changed needed to be made.”
As for the team, defender George Edmundson is likely to feature for the Latics following his appearance on Tuesday night.
This was the defender’s first outing for Oldham since August after his return from a loan spell at Alfreton Town.
Marc Klok and Lee Erwin remain out whilst Lee Croft has become a concern after being forced off during the second half on Tuesday with a tight hamstring. He will be assessed later this week.
Oldham could change things up front, with former boss Robinson admitting on Wednesday: “We haven’t got strikers who are scoring goals, so you have to try something different rather than doing the same thing over and over again.”
The Latics started both Ryan McLaughin and Darius Osei up front against Mansfield on Tuesday, but both failed to break their goal scoring duck in the 2-0 defeat.
This latest blank means Oldham have not scored a goal in all competitions for over a month – their last came in a 3-1 away win to Walsall in the Checktrade Trophy on December 13.
LAST TIME WE MET
The two sides met at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium in October, when the visitors came away with a 2-1 victory.
Cody McDonald’s header after 10 minutes was cancelled out by second-half goals through Freddie Ladapo and Ryan Flynn.
The teams have met 46 times in total, with the Gills winning 17, drawing six and losing 23.
FANCY A FLUTTER?
Latics win – 7/5
Draw – 9/4
Gills win– 2/1
GillsPlayer will have live match commentary from 3pm with Ben Watts and Peter Lloyd. To subscribe, click here.
The GillsWall will have interactive text commentary of the match, and the club’s social media channels will be bringing you live updates throughout the day.
SATURDAY’S SKY BET LEAGUE ONE FIXTURES
AFC Wimbledon vs Oxford United
Bolton Wanderers vs Swindon Town
Bury vs Peterborough United
Charlton Athletic vs Millwall
Chesterfield vs Coventry City
Fleetwood Town vs Bristol Rovers
Northampton Town vs Scunthorpe United
Port Vale vs MK Dons
Shrewsbury Town vs Bradford City
Southend United vs Rochdale
Walsall vs Sheffield United