Gillingham v Rochdale preview
Gillingham v Rochdale preview

Gillingham should have midfielder Scott Wagstaff back from a hamstring problem for the visit of Sky Bet League One strugglers Rochdale.

Sean Clare has returned to Sheffield Wednesday at the end of his successful loan spell, so Wagstaff could come straight back into the side.

Midfielder Elliott List has been sidelined by a sickness bug hitting the squad, while forward Tom Eaves will also be assessed on a knee problem.

Billy Bingham remains sidelined as the midfielder continues his rehabilitation from a broken ankle.

Rochdale boss Keith Hill will hope to have new signing and former Gills midfielder Billy Knott available for the trip to Priestfield Stadium. Midfielder Knott has moved to Spotland from Lincoln on loan for the rest of the season, and could figure subject to EPL approval.

Hill could see his options increased in the wake of last weekend’s 1-0 FA Cup win at Doncaster. Joe Rafferty and Steve Davies both missed the win at the Keepmoat Stadium and are pushing to make their respective returns.

Gillingham have won their last three home matches against Rochdale in League One without conceding a single goal; in fact, the last time Gillingham failed to score against Rochdale in a home match came back in March 1992, scoring in all 10 matches in all competitions since.

However, Rochdale have won back to back League One matches against Gillingham, scoring seven goals and conceding just one – the Dale have never won three consecutive Football League matches against Gillingham.

Josh Parker has been directly involved in eight goals in 26 League One games this season for Gillingham (seven goals, one assist), exactly double his goal involvement in the whole of last season for the Gills (four – two goals, two assists).

Rochdale are one of just three sides in the top four tiers of English football yet to win an away league game this season (also Bury and Millwall). Indeed, the Dale have not won on the road in League One since April 2017, going 14 games without victory on their travels (D6 L8) since.

Ian Henderson has found the net in each of the last two league meetings between these two sides having not scored in any of his first eight such appearances against the Gills.

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