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Folkestone Invicta 1 Gillingham 3 - match report

By Luke Cawdell
Gillingham's Bradley Dack in action at Folkestone last season Picture: Paul Amos

Gillingham got their pre-season campaign off to a winning start at Folkestone.

Josh Vincent had put the Ryman League hosts ahead but that lead was cancelled out with goals from Danny Kedwell and Brennan Dickenson

Doug Loft extended Gills' advantage early in the second half to seal a comfortable win for the League 1 side.

Folkestone captain Liam Friend was celebrating a decade of football at Cheriton Road and his team stood up well to their Football League opponents.

Gillingham dominated much of the first half, however, with a starting XI mainly made up of last season's squad. The game marked the end of an intensive week of training for the Gills, having just returned to Kent from a week in Essex.

Playing left-wing for Gillingham, in a 4-4-2 formation, was former Tunbridge Wells winger Josh Stanford.

The diminutive wide-man shone at times, showing an ability to beat people and he wasn't afraid to shoot either.

Gills boss Peter Taylor named two seperate teams for each half, with only left-back Gary Borrowdale and keeper Stuart Nelson returning after the break.

Second half substitutions saw England youth keeper and former Folkestone stopper Tom Hadler replace Nelson and youth player Mitchell Dickenson come on for Borrowdale.

It was Folkestone who took the lead, against the run of play, when Paul Booth's forward ball found Vincent and he lobbed Nelson with a smart finish.

Gary Borrowdale can't stop Josh Vincent scoring for Folkestone Picture: Paul Amos

But the Gills were level almost immediately. Dack's corner found its way to Kedwell and his low drive, through a crowded penalty area, nestled into the bottom corner.

Folkestone applied some pressure at the end of the half but the scores remained level.

Many of Gills' new signings appeared for the second half and two of them combined for the second goal for Taylor's side.

Brennan Dickenson had already stung the hands of keeper Tim Roberts before firing home moments later, converting Jermaine McGlashan's pull-back from close range on 51 minutes.

Gillingham were well on top after the break and Loft - wearing the captain's armband in the second half - made it 3-1 when he rifled home a low shot as the Folkestone defence retreated.

Cody McDonald had an angled effort tipped over and Luke Norris had a shot deflected out for a corner.

Gillingham first half: Nelson, Hare, Borrowdale, Legge, Barrett, Hessenthaler, Dack, Millbank, Stanford, German, Kedwell. Gills second half: Nelson (Hadler 60mins), Fish, Borrowdale (M Dickenson 70mins), Egan, Davies, McKain, Loft, McGlashan, B Dickenson, Norris, McDonald.

Folkestone: Roberts, Vincent, Blanks, Friend, Chappell, Yianni (Coyne 55mins), Smith (Edge 75mins), M Everitt (Draycott 46mins), J Everitt (Dryden 75mins), Booth (Phillip 55mins), Newman (Wraight 67mins).

Video by Sammy Brough.

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