Gills v Barnsley: Preview & Predictions

Who would have thought it, maximum points versus Barnsley and we could be just a solitary point off the Play Off places.

Yes, us, little Gillingham.

You know, that ramshackle of a side that merely two months ago were certainties for relegation back to the basement division.

But not anymore.

Boss Justin Edinburgh – unbeaten since arriving – has spoken this week of trusting his current crop of players, saying that he does not want to dip into the loan market unless it is really necessary.

That speaks volumes for where the players and club are. Everyone is working hard, everyone is playing for each other, and everyone is enjoying themselves.

Edinburgh even spoke of having to slightly reel the boys in during training, almost having to force them to leave the training ground such is their current enthusiasm.

On top of that centre half John Egan has come out and said that the boys want to put in a performance against their northern visitors to erase the memory of their embarrassing no show during the 1-4 away defeat at Oakwell in August.

          Egan is desperate to make up for August’s 1-4 defeat.

All the noises coming out of the club at the moment are spot on.

Wanting to work hard, wanting to win games. There is a confidence without coming across as being arrogant.

It is refreshing to see, and long may it – and the unbeaten run – continue.

Choices aplenty……….

The gaffer has pretty much the full complement to choose from for this League One encounter, as both Josh Pritchard and Aaron Morris returned to action in the Development win over Bournemouth in the week. Whether they will be fit enough to be included – particularly Morris – remains to be seen, but at this crucial stage of the campaign it is good to have bodies returning.

Only Callum Davies and Josh Hare remain absent long term.

So the team?

As with previous games, there is no reason to make changes to a side that is playing so well, so Justin could – and perhaps should – stick with the same starting eleven that has served so well recently. Yes Danny Galbraith wasn’t great during the first period at Yeovil, but one poor half doesn’t make him a bad player.

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   RainhamEndViews selected XI.

And we all know what threat Jermaine McGlashan possesses from the bench.

Prediction

The away side will be buoyed by the appointment of Lee Johnson as their new boss, and as we know too well that can have a positive effect on the playing staff, so the Gills need to ensure they are switched on and concentrate on what they need to do.

Tuesday’s victory at Scunthorpe was Barnsley’s first away triumph since November 1st, and in the intervening period they had lost seven on the bounce.

Johnson himself has also recently lost at the Priestfield, when his Oldham side were beaten 3-2 just over a month ago.

That victory for the blue boys was part of a four game winning sequence at home, so if the lads are switched on and do the same things that they have done over the last eight games they should have enough – remember they are on the longest scoring run in all four divisions – to pick up another vital three points.

Gillingham 3 Barnsley 1

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