Published: 06:00, 19 November 2019
| Updated: 09:23, 19 November 2019
Gillingham manager Steve Evans won’t be getting involved in any mind games ahead of Tuesday's FA Cup first round replay with League 1 big guns Sunderland.
The date for the replay was only officially announced on Thursday after Sunderland were reportedly looking to play the game the following Tuesday.
They have several players missing on international duty and were keen to have them available for the replay.
Evans said: “They will be missing two players against us, both the McLaughlans. Goalkeeper Jon with Scotland and the other boy (Connor with Northern Ireland). The other two kids they refer to were on the bench unused against us.
“We are missing our left-back Tom O’Connor, who for me is one of the best left-backs in the league. I won’t be believing any kidology about who is available and who is not, that’s for sure, I am too experienced for that.”
The winners will face either AFC Wimbledon or Doncaster in round two. Their replay is on the same night.
The Black Cats had the weekend off after international call-ups led to their match against Bristol Rovers being postponed.
They were denied the chance to have the FA Cup match delayed.
Evans, speaking after the weekend win over Lincoln, said: “That sets Sunderland up nicely but they have had a weekend off, they have not played since Scunthorpe in the EFL Trophy (last Tuesday).
“They will be fresh, they will travel down early, they will be a real handful on the night, a totally different game to Saturday.
“It is going to be tough. They will be organised, they will be efficient, they’ve had a weekend off and they will have been working on it.”
Sunderland boss Phil Parkinson was frustrated that they were able to postpone their weekend league match because of international call-ups but not the FA Cup replay.
Speaking in the Sunderland Echo, he said: "It’s a bit of a loophole that you can call a league game off because of international call-ups but not an FA Cup game.
"They (the FA) looked at it very closely, and then decided it was a no, but they have promised everybody that they will review the rules for next year."
Sunderland are expected to be be missing ten players for Gills game, with six on the treatment table. Parkinson has said he will be playing a number of their younger pros in the match.
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More by this authorLuke Cawdell