Date: 28th September 2007 at 5:36pm
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Leeds United go into the match against Gillingham looking to extend the more than impressive winning streak against one of the clubs who voted to give Leeds the 15 point penalty.

Vital Quotes:

Leeds United assistant manager Gus Poyet is still keeping his feet firmly on the ground with the ‘one step at a time’ attitude: ‘It’s going to be tough,’ admitted Poyet. ‘We know that.

‘You can feel from people talking that every single team is waiting to be the first one, not just to beat us, but to be the first to take points off us.

‘But it’s still 11 v 11 and there’s no excuses. We can’t think about the rest, we can only look after ourselves.’

On the flip side it’s very much ‘as you were’ with regards the classic Vs Leeds manager comments, with caretaker boss (joint) Iffy Onuora clearly not afraid of The Whites explosive start to the season: ‘Leeds United are a massive club and they have done remarkably well this season given the circumstances.

‘We respect them but we don’t fear anyone.

‘Whichever team comes here we want to make life difficult for them – it doesn’t matter whether they are top of the league or bottom.’

The Yorkshire Evening Post broke the news today about Gills chairman Paul Scully admitting to voting for the Leeds United points penalty, something which he obviously hasn’t thought through. Surely firing the Leeds squad up the night before the game isn’t the best idea, considering morale is already sky high at Elland Road.

Scully said: ‘I don’t need to hide behind anonymity or a secret ballot. I voted with the League’s board and I think I was right to do so. I wasn’t responsible for deciding whether Leeds should be punished, or what their punishment should be.’

That said, with credit to Mr Scully he did feel to add: ‘It’s a shame that the fans at Leeds have had to suffer, and I feel sorry for the players and staff as well. I actually know Dennis Wise well, and I’d be very upset if I was in the position he was in at the start of the season. But at the end of the day this was the Football League board’s decision, and I don’t think Leeds’ argument against it was good enough.’

Gillingham Team News:

Goalkeeper Simon Royce is a doubt for this weekends fixture, with the joint management of Mick Docherty and Iffy Onuora sweating on the fitness of both Royce and Gary Mulligan.

New signings Adam Nowland and Chris Dickson, from Preston North End and Charlton respectively are in line to make their debuts.

Defender Jupp is the only long term injury problem for Gillingham.

Player to watch: Efe Sodje

I’m going to agree with Vital Gillingham today, I’ve seen Efe Sodje play during his days at Crewe Alexandra and when he’s on his day can be a real dominant force in the heart of a defence.

Leeds United Team News:

Alan Thompson is a welcome return to the Leeds United side, adding that good old ‘selection headache’ for the management to contemplate.

If I were you, I’d expect the same starting line-up as the Swansea match.

Player to watch: David Prutton

The Leeds #7 scored his first goal for Leeds United last weekend against Swansea City, expect him to be chasing more goals in the future, starting with the next League One fixture.

Match Facts & Stats

  • The first ever Gillingham FC was believed to be a man called William Ironside Groombridge, though at the time his post was known as ‘Secretary.’

  • In the 2006 World Cup, Brent Sancho became Gillingham’s first ever World Cup representative. Sancho used to play in his native Trinidad for a club called Joe Public FC.

  • Another Gills player, and our ‘One to Watch’ Efe Sodje became the first ever World Cup representative of Crewe Alex, turning out for Nigeria in the 2002 tournament in Japan/S.Korea that included a group-stage match against England.

    Ref Watch:

    The referee for the fixture is Mr D. McDermid who has managed 12 yellow and 2 red cards in his 4 games so far this season.

    It appears that Mr McDermid is a relatively new referee to the Football League One game and from the records I have searched hasn’t actually officiated a Leeds United match yet.

    I do hope he enjoys his first one!

    Match Prediction:

    We just keep on winning don’t we, not sure we’ll stop right now either.

    2-0 Leeds United is my mystical prediction.

    Next Fixtures:

    Leeds continue their road trip with a journey to Oldham Athletic on Tuesday evening (2nd October, 7.45 kickoff.)


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