Cody McDonald marked his return to Priestfield with a goal in Tuesday night’s friendly match against Ipswich.
His early second half goal cancelled out a free-kick from Ipswich’s David McGoldrick.
The Championship side won the game 2-1 with an injury-time goal from David October, as he drilled home a cross from Elliott Hewitt.
Gillingham started the match with McDonald (pictured) partnering Danny Kedwell upfront and the hosts posed some early problems for the Championship visitors.
But as the half wore on Ipswich became more dominant. They took the lead midway through the opening half when McGoldrick picked himself up after being fouled by Bradley Dack and curled home the free-kick from 25 yards.
McGoldrick and former Gills loanee Frank Nouble were giving the home defence plenty to think about.
And it meant a busy half for Gills keeper Stuart Nelson, who pulled off a few fantastic blocks. Nouble was denied as he fired a shot towards the top corner and Gills’ number one made a double block to save from McGoldrick and then Paul Anderson.
Mick McCarthy’s side may have ended the first half on top but within 12 seconds of the restart McDonald signalled his return to the Gills team with a goal. He rolled the ball home under keeper Scott Loach after receiving a good ball forward from Bradley Dack.
Gills boss Martin Allen had made his way down from the stands for the second half. He looked on as Steven Gregory stung the hands of keeper Loach with a 20 yard drive. At the other end McGoldrick’s overhead kick went narrowly over.
A flurry of substitutes upset the rhythm of the game but saw both Adebayo Akinfenwa and Antonio German introduced, as like McDonald they made their first return onto the Priestfield turf.
Nelson was on hand with 13 minutes left to get hold of Tommy Smith’s glancing header, as the ball was returned back into the box after Jay Tabb’s free-kick was cleared.
Akinfenwa made his presence felt upfront, and had claims for a penalty turned down, after appearing to have been pulled down in the box.
Ipswich won the match with virtually the last kick of the game but the Gills will be happy with their workout at Priestfield.
Gillingham: Nelson, Fish, Martin, Legge, Barrett, Gregory (Davies 74mins), Dack (Butcher 80mins), Grant (Birchall 66mins), Whelpdale (Muggleton 56mins), Kedwell (German 66mins), McDonald (Akinfenwa 66mins). Subs: Hare, Miller, McKain, Derry, Gowans.
Ipswich: Loach, Veseli (Hewitt 46mins), Mings (October 80mins), Bramble (Chambers 72mins), Khumalo (Skuse 72mins), Wordsworth (Hammond 72mins), Anderson (Smith 72mins), Hyam (Lawrence 80mins), Nouble (Chopra 66mins), McGoldrick (Murphy 66mins), Tabb (Carson 80mins). Subs: Gerken.