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Bradford City v Gillingham preview and team news from head coach Stephen Clemence ahead of the League 2 match at Valley Parade

Gillingham have four games left to save their season but the head coach isn’t looking beyond this weekend.

Stephen Clemence’s men need a win at Bradford and might need to win all four of their remaining games to claim a play-off spot. It’s a big ask for a team who got thrashed last time out and have struggled for consistency all season, but it’s not impossible.

Gillingham head coach Stephen Clemence preparing for League 2 clash at Bradford City Picture: @Julian_KPI
Gillingham head coach Stephen Clemence preparing for League 2 clash at Bradford City Picture: @Julian_KPI

More: Players warned after Harrogate collapse

Clemence is leaving the speculating on what could happen in those remaining games to others as he aims to try and rebuild following a 5-1 loss at Harrogate.

He said: “The challenge is the next game, when Liverpool won all of those trophies a year or two ago, all Jurgen Klopp and the players talked about was the next game and that’s the right thing to do.

“If you look too far in the future you’re forgetting about the bit in the middle. Let’s see how we get on at Bradford and then take care of the next bit of business.

“We want to finish the season strong, we have got four games to go and we need to do as well as we can.

“The result (at Harrogate) hurt a lot of people and we want a reaction, but we just have to go and give a performance and in most of the games we’ve been involved in there has been a good performance, games have been pretty tight.

“If we see a performance you hope a result will follow. There are no guarantees but if you get the performance right there is more chance of you succeeding and that’s what we’ll try and get right on Saturday.

“Let’s see if we can get three points at Bradford and see where that takes us. I don’t want to look too far ahead, thinking about the next four and what might happen, it’s about the next game and that is what I’m trying to get the players to focus on.

“I think sometimes people get ahead of themselves and what could happen at the end.

“As a football club we need to stay together, we have all had a kick in the stomach, and we have a better chance at Bradford if we stay together.

“I will be looking at the next game - we have to take care of Bradford. That will be another tough game.

“I won’t come out and say we’ll do this or that, we have to make sure we do better than we did in the last half hour at Harrogate.”

League 2 table

While the Gills have struggled to claim a play-off place this season, the frustration at Bradford has been plentiful too, the well-supported club way down in 15th place.

Clemence said: “There will be a big crowd, a big stadium and the pitch isn’t great, that will be a challenge and I am sure that Graham (Alexander, the manager) is not too happy with his home pitch at the moment and so that will be different.

“They have obviously got some good players and we have a good idea of how they will play and we have to go and take them on.

“Bradford away is always a challenge, a big football team, arguably the biggest supported club in the division.

“It’s going to be a tough game but one we should be looking forward to after what’s just happened on Monday.

“The good thing about football is that when you get knocked down you get an opportunity to get straight back up and that is what the boys and myself will be looking to do.

“I am looking forward to getting back out there. I want it to come around quickly after what happened on Monday.”

Clemence reported no fresh injury concerns during his weekly press conference on Thursday but said the game might come too early for midfielder Dom Jefferies who is close to a return.

Jefferies could feature in next weekend’s home game against Barrow if he doesn’t make the trip to Bradford.

Clemence said: “I have missed having him and he gives you that energy in the midfield area. He is 21, can run about all day. It will be nice to have him back.

“Losing Josh Andrews and Jorge Hurtado haven’t helped me and when you bring Dom Jefferies into the equation that has not been great from my point of view. We have to find ways to win when you haven’t got some of your players it hasn’t been easy.”

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