Saddlers on tour-The Gills
Sat 1st Sept 2007
3pm Kick off
Now don't get me wrong I have no axe to grind against the fans or people of Gillingham, but I just don't like going there, its a lousy journey rescued by a fun pub then let down by one of the poorest away ends in the league...in my humble opinion. This time around add to it a tense nervous atmosphere as both teams seek there first win, and I am looking forward to it even less.
Things are not going well in Kent and the locals are getting restless, they are point less at the moment but at least they scored there first goal in last saturdays 3-1 defeat at Luton, whilst a number of teams will leave Kenilworth road pointless this season home defeat to Tranmere and an opening day reverse at Cheltenham show signs of concern. Injuries have also played there part.
So you can see the similarities between them and ourselves. However the players have come out fighting, they believe that in facing Swansea twice we have faced one of the better teams in the divison, also in Leyton Orient and Carisle we have faced the two inform teams in the divison, proven by the fact they sit first and second, and in truth with a bit of luck we could have had more than one point on the board if it wasn't for individual mistakes.
So now is the time to prove our metal, can we put in a performance can we grab the points. This could be the first turning point of the season....for both teams.
The noise from Kent has been defiant,Gills manager Ronnie Jepson told the club's official website: 'They are all big, crucial games. We are looking forward to it and hopefully we can get three points on the board. Walsall are a strong outfit and they had an excellent first 45 minutes against Swansea last week. They had Ian Roper, the centre-half, sent-off and that put a different slant on the game.
'It will be a tough game. They are buoyant, new to the league and there is no easy game in the league.
'Supporters will always say it is a game that we should win, you'll never stop that. Our home record is good and hopefully we can get back on track. We are four games in so anything can happen.
'I have never been one for making predictions. If other people make them, that is down to them.'
Whilst Danny Sonner and DD both have stated not to panic yet.
To read DD's views and our comments CLICK HERE
Gillingham Team News:
I have taken this straight from the vital Gillingham site I hope they don't mind, but they know better than me....
The Gills' options for the clash could be severely restricted, with eight players possibly missing out.
Efe Sodje and Duncan Jupp are the only definite absentees, as Sodje completes a three-match ban for his red card at Watford while Jupp is still struggling with a hamstring injury.
But he could be joined on the sidelines by Gary Mulligan and Simon King - who both missed the defeat at Luton, where David Graham and Aaron Brown were added to the injury list.
Nicky Southall and Barry Cogan have also sat out training during the week, so the likes of Sean Clohessy, Marvin Hamilton, Tom Bryant, Craig Stone, Luis Cumbers and Andy Pugh could all find themselves in contention.
TO read the Gills View CLICK HERE
Player to watch: Delroy Facey
Both sites tend to agree that Facey may well be the key to the game. If we can keep the pacey Facey quiet then we might just have a chance.
The thing is he always seems to do well against us.
Walsall Team News:
We have a number of players who are in contention but short of match fitness, such as Rhys Weston, Martin Butler and Sonko.
Ian Roper is suspended and Alan Picken still out as he missed the reserve game midweek. The news on how bad Tommy Mooneys calf injury is very much 'we will have to wait and see'
Other wise very much a clean bill of health
Player to watch: Ishmel Demontagnac
Although a number of players will want to improve on last saturdays efforts.. I wonder how much the emotion of Anton Reid has effected some players on saturday. Ishmel is the one to watch with interest.
On his day a real match winner, he started last saturday but will DD be so bold away from home, or will he be used as an impact player.
Match Facts & Stats
Luton 3 - 1 Gillingham
Gillingham 0 - 2 Tranmere
Cheltenham 1 - 0 Gillingham
Gillingham 0 - 2 Yeovil
Bournemouth 1 - 1 Gillingham
Gillingham 3 - 2 Port Vale
Of 100 meetings between the two clubs in all competitions,the Gills have the edge with 44 wins to our 40, with 16 draws.
The two teams last met in the 2005/06 season when the Saddlers won both games, 2-0 at the Bescot Stadium in November, and 1-0 in the final home game in April. Of course that last game of the season was too little too late.
Whilst our previous defeat 3-0 in the championship was the nail in our relegation coffin, we just didn't turn up that day.
It has suprised many Saddlers fans that our defence has let us down this season after been such a strong point last season. I am sure DD has been working on the training ground to cut out the individual errors. I can see us keeping a clean sheet, and I can see us creating chances but will we take them....I doubt it 0-0 for me.
Bournemouth away in the JPT next tuesday.
Port Vale at home next saturday 1pm kick off