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Oxford United 0 Gillingham 0

Chris Whelpdale
Chris Whelpdale

Gillingham's Chris Whelpdale gets a headed effort in on goal against Oxford on Saturday Picture: Barry Goodwin

Gillingham’s perfect away record in League 2 came to an end at Oxford on Saturday.

The Gills remain unbeaten on their travels, however, as the game ended goalless.

Martin Allen made just the one change to the Gills side which beat Northampton Town on Tuesday night, with Myles Weston replacing the suspended Charlie Allen. On the bench Bradley Dack returned from his own ban to make it into the matchday squad.

Allen’s side – backed by 1,014 travelling fans - almost got off to a perfect start at the Kassam Stadium but home keeper Ryan Clarke pulled off a great double save to first deny Danny Kedwell and then block Adam Barrett’s follow-up.

Oxford failed to test Gills keeper Stuart Nelson in the opening half but did hit the woodwork, when danger-man Sean Rigg crossed for Alfie Potter and his header bounced off the bar and then off the head of Adam Flanagan, before Gills cleared.

Chris Whelpdale and Deon Burton had earlier fired efforts wide for the Gills and at the end of the half the hosts were again grateful to Clarke, who saved an effort from Burton and then Matt Fish.

Clarke continued to frustrate the Gills early in the second half as he made a flying save to deny Burton. There were also early appeals for a penalty when the Oxford keeper took Kedwell out instead of claiming the ball. Referee Iain Williamson was not interested in Gillingham’s protests.

The Gills were forced into making a change 10 minutes into the second half, with David Wright limping off, and while the visitors were still settling, Oxford broke and it needed a great save from Nelson to deny Potter.

Whelpdale put a great chance over from a Payne corner on the hour but it was a second half of few goalscoring chances. Later in the game it needed a flying block by Flanagan to keep out Tom Craddock’s drive at goal.

Gillingham: Nelson, Fish, Martin, Flanagan, Barrett, Wright (Montrose 55mins), Whelpdale, Payne, Weston (Findley 59mins), Burton (Frampton 71mins), Kedwell. Subs not used: Forecast, Davies, Dack, Strevens.

Oxford: Clarke, Batt (Boateng, 43mins), Wright, Mullins, O'Brien, Chapman, Heslop, Forster-Caskey, Potter (Constable 82mins), Smalley (Craddock 46mins), Rigg. Subs not used: Crocombe, Capaldi, Leven, Worley.

Attendance: 6,690

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