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League 1 match report: Gillingham 1 Coventry City 1

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A moment of brilliance from Elliott List earned Gillingham a point from their League 1 clash against Coventry.

The opening half wasn’t short of chances but neither side were able to finish.

Jonson Clarke-Harris put Coventry ahead seconds after the restart but the Gills were level through substitute List.

Elliott List celebrates his equalising goal Picture: Ady Kerry (3802048)
Elliott List celebrates his equalising goal Picture: Ady Kerry (3802048)

Match reaction from Gills boss Steve Lovell

Gillingham’s starting line-up was unchanged from the one that kicked off against Sunderland in the week but they picked up two injuries in the opening half. Mark Byrne and Regan Charles-Cook both limped off.

It was an entertaining first half, one where Coventry looked lively, hoping to make amends from a disappointing performance last time out, one which their manager had demanded a response from. He made five changes.

The Gills had lost heavily to Sunderland but still managed to impress with their attacking football. It was Coventry who started the brighter on Saturday, forcing boss Steve Lovell to change shape of his team early on, to match the visitors.

Gabriel Zakuani had to clear a weak effort from Tony Andreu which had managed to beat keeper Tomas Holy. Coventry had a lot of the ball but were unable to make the Gills pay, with Zakuani and Max Ehmer both making crucial blocks.

Coventry had failed to score in any of their previous three away games and looked short of a finisher in the opening half.

Brandon Hanlan was Gills’ biggest threat. Josh Parker had a shot blocked by Dominic Hyam after Hanlan’s shot had been parried by keeper Lee Burge.

Hanlan had a shot saved, after cutting in and finding space on the edge of the box. Burge was again unable to hold the effort and was grateful to see the linesman raise his flag for offside as Tom Eaves converted.

A great cross from Bradley Garmston created another chance for Hanlan, but with time and space, he headed over.

Jordan Shipley wasted a couple of good chances late in the half for Coventry and Parker fired an effort into the arms of Burge before the break.

Coventry made a great start to the second half, scoring one and threatening to add to their lead. Clarke-Harris headed home a Brandon Mason cross to put the visitors a goal ahead shortly after the restart.

Luke Thomas wasted a great chance to make it 2-0, robbing Parker of possession but then firing well over from the edge of the box. His cross then gave Clarke-Harris another chance but he headed over.

It was a torrid start to the half for the Gills and Tony Andreu dragged a shot wide just before the hour mark and Dominic Hyam also miscued. At the other end Tom Eaves hit an effort well wide and Gabriel Zakuani glanced the ball wide from a corner.

Gillingham sub List levelled the scores with a super solo effort, twenty minutes from time. He robbed Luke Thomas of the ball, charged at goal, cut inside after reaching the byline, skipped past the pursuing Thomas and from an acute angle blasted the ball home.

List created another chance moments later, linking up with Parker, but his finish was wide of the near post. The goal had given the Gills momentum but Coventry remained a threat, going close through Jordan Shipley and Tom Bayliss.

Visiting sub Reise Allassani caused problems with his pace, putting a deflected shot into the side netting in the final minute and then firing over in stoppage-time.

List’s goal ensured the Gills avoided making it three league defeats in a row.

Gillingham: Holy, O’Neill, Garmston, Zakuani, Ehmer, Byrne (Reilly 31mins), Bingham, Charles-Cook (List 41mins), Parker, Eaves, Hanlan (Wilkinson 74mins). Subs not used: Hadler, Lacey, Fuller, Nasseri.

Coventry: Burge, Grimmer, Mason, Willis, Doyle, Hyam, Clarke-Harris (Bakayoko 89mins), Bayliss, Andreu, Thomas (Allassani 82mins), Shipley (Ponticelli 88mins). Subs not used: O'Brien, Davies, Hiwula, Brown.

Attendance: 4,880 (692 away)

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