Matt Fish's superb strike helped Gillingham extend their lead at the top of League Two to eight points with a win over struggling Accrington.

Fish's pivotal goal came when he picked up the ball on the edge of the area and his left-footed drive crashed off the underside of the bar and into the net.

Gillingham should have extended their lead but Deon Burton, Danny Kedwell and Chris Whelpdale were all denied.

Francis Jeffers went closest for the visitors but his effort was well saved.

VIEWS FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Gillingham manager Martin Allen told BBC Radio Kent:

"We were absolutely fantastic first half, very tenacious, very composed in possession.

"We've seen in all the divisions anxiety can set in, and what the players showed was determination, courage, togetherness and unity to protect that goal.

"I wouldn't say we held on, but we defended resolutely, and you can see everyone has done their job for the club. You can tell from the reaction of the supporters it was a great victory.

"I've never seen Matt Fish kick it with his left foot before, but he nearly breaks the cross bar, in off the bar, unbelievable shot, went in like a missile, what a moment that was for him."

Lineup, Bookings (2) & Substitutions (5)

Gillingham

  • 01 Nelson
  • 02 Fish
  • 03 Martin
  • 06 Legge
  • 26 Barrett
  • 07 Whelpdale
  • 10 Robinson
  • 14 Allen (Weston - 64' )
  • 28 Gregory (Lee - 84' )
  • 09 Kedwell
  • 20 Burton (German - 64' )

Substitutes

  • 21 Forecast
  • 05 East
  • 15 Davies
  • 08 Lee
  • 24 Weston
  • 17 Birchall
  • 19 German

Accrington Stanley

  • 01 Rachubka
  • 02 Murphy
  • 06 Winnard
  • 24 Molyneux
  • 26 Aldred
  • 34 Wilson
  • 04 Joyce
  • 08 Barnett Booked (Lindfield - 44' Booked )
  • 10 Hatfield
  • 27 Linganzi
  • 09 Jeffers (Beattie - 71' )

Substitutes

  • 25 Dunbavin
  • 03 Liddle
  • 12 Miller
  • 14 Clark
  • 07 Lindfield
  • 17 Gray
  • 21 Beattie
Ref: Malone
Att: 10,097

Match Stats

Shots

11 7

On target

6 2

Corners

8 4

Fouls

10 8

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +5:24 Full time

Full Time The referee brings the game to a close.

90:00 +3:53

Corner from the right by-line taken by Laurence Wilson, Leon Legge makes a clearance.

90:00 +1:36

Effort on goal by Lee Molyneux from a long way out goes over the bar.

89:01

Stuart Nelson takes the free kick.

89:01 Booking

Booking Booking for Craig Lindfield for unsporting behaviour.

88:11

Laurence Wilson crosses the ball, Stuart Nelson makes a save. Craig Lindfield concedes a free kick for a foul on Stuart Nelson.

86:19

Corner taken right-footed by Craig Lindfield from the left by-line, save made by Stuart Nelson.

85:27

Effort on goal by Lee Molyneux from 35 yards went harmlessly over the target.

83:44

Direct free kick taken by Peter Murphy.

83:44 Substitution

Substitution Charlie Lee comes on in place of Steven Gregory.

83:44

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Peter Murphy by Steven Gregory.

82:48

Handball decision goes against Will Hatfield. Direct free kick taken by Stuart Nelson.

81:31

Inswinging corner taken by Myles Weston from the right by-line, save by Paul Rachubka.

80:47

Free kick awarded for a foul by Antonio German on Dean Winnard. Paul Rachubka takes the free kick.

78:31

The assistant referee signals for offside against Danny Kedwell. Paul Rachubka restarts play with the free kick.

77:48

Foul by Leon Legge on Paul Rachubka, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Paul Rachubka.

76:19

Corner taken left-footed by Myles Weston from the right by-line, James Beattie makes a clearance. Inswinging corner taken by Myles Weston, save made by Paul Rachubka.

72:09

The ball is crossed by Myles Weston.

71:36

Short corner taken by Myles Weston from the right by-line.

70:35 Substitution

Substitution Francis Jeffers goes off and James Beattie comes on.

67:42

Steven Gregory concedes a free kick for a foul on Luke Joyce. Laurence Wilson restarts play with the free kick.

66:40

Danny Kedwell gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Peter Murphy. Free kick taken by Peter Murphy.

62:51 Substitution

Substitution Deon Burton leaves the field to be replaced by Antonio German.

62:51 Substitution

Substitution Myles Weston replaces Charlie Allen.

62:51

Outswinging corner taken by Charlie Allen from the right by-line, save by Paul Rachubka. Steven Gregory produces a right-footed shot from 35 yards and missed to the left of the target.

58:09

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Craig Lindfield, Danny Kedwell makes a clearance.

57:17

Francis Jeffers takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Save made by Paul Rachubka.

55:52

Peter Murphy takes a shot. Save by Stuart Nelson. Laurence Wilson takes a short corner.

54:44

Charlie Allen concedes a free kick for a foul on Laurence Wilson. Free kick taken by Laurence Wilson.

52:22

The official flags Danny Kedwell offside. Paul Rachubka restarts play with the free kick.

50:49

Chris Whelpdale has a drilled shot. Dean Winnard gets a block in. Corner taken right-footed by Charlie Allen from the right by-line, Header on goal by Steven Gregory from just inside the area goes over the goal.

50:04

Luke Joyce has an effort at goal from outside the area missing to the wide right of the goal.

49:29

Lee Molyneux delivers the ball, Leon Legge makes a clearance.

46:23

Free kick awarded for a foul by Will Hatfield on Joe Martin. Stuart Nelson takes the free kick.

45:01

The referee gets the second half underway.

45:00 +3:04 Half time

Half Time The match has reached half-time.

45:00 +1:59

The referee blows for offside against Anton Robinson. Free kick taken by Paul Rachubka.

45:00 +1:09

Joe Martin has an effort at goal from outside the area missing to the wide right of the goal.

45:00 +0:59

Matt Fish sends in a cross, Craig Lindfield manages to make a clearance.

42:54 Substitution

Substitution Craig Lindfield joins the action as a substitute, replacing Charlie Barnett.

42:54

A cross is delivered by Peter Murphy, Headed effort from close range by Will Hatfield goes wide left of the goal.

42:24

Laurence Wilson crosses the ball, clearance by Leon Legge.

41:14

Chris Whelpdale has an effort at goal from 20 yards. Paul Rachubka makes a save.

40:43

The ball is crossed by Joe Martin, Anton Robinson takes a shot. Paul Rachubka makes a save.

39:28

The ball is swung over by Chris Whelpdale.

36:48

Stuart Nelson takes the free kick.

36:48 Booking

Booking Charlie Barnett receives a caution for unsporting behaviour.

36:28

Charlie Barnett concedes a free kick for a foul on Charlie Allen.

36:06

Luke Joyce handles the ball and concedes a free kick. Steven Gregory takes the free kick.

29:48

Deon Burton fouled by Tom Aldred, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Charlie Allen.

29:21

Lee Molyneux has an effort at goal from long distance that misses to the right of the target.

28:01

Unfair challenge on Lee Molyneux by Anton Robinson results in a free kick. Laurence Wilson takes the direct free kick.

26:32

Free kick awarded for a foul by Joe Martin on Peter Murphy. The free kick is delivered left-footed by Laurence Wilson from right wing, save by Stuart Nelson.

23:11 Goal scored

Goal! - Matt Fish - Gillingham 1 - 0 Accrington Matt Fish gets on the score sheet with a goal from long range to the top right corner of the goal. Gillingham 1-0 Accrington Stanley.

22:06

Free kick awarded for a foul by Will Hatfield on Chris Whelpdale. Charlie Allen restarts play with the free kick.

19:25

Charlie Allen takes a outswinging corner. Charlie Allen takes the outswinging corner, clearance made by Amine Linganzi.

18:31

A cross is delivered by Laurence Wilson.

18:12

Danny Kedwell gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Peter Murphy. Direct free kick taken by Paul Rachubka.

17:04

Tom Aldred gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Deon Burton. The ball is sent over by Charlie Allen, Deon Burton takes a shot. Blocked by Dean Winnard.

15:49

Shot from long distance by Charlie Allen misses to the right of the target.

15:06

The ball is crossed by Matt Fish, Chris Whelpdale produces a header from inside the area that goes over the crossbar.

11:34

The referee blows for offside against Danny Kedwell. Laurence Wilson restarts play with the free kick.

8:19

The referee penalises Deon Burton for handball. Paul Rachubka restarts play with the free kick.

7:44

Chris Whelpdale sends in a cross, Dean Winnard manages to make a clearance.

5:59

The referee blows for offside. Paul Rachubka takes the free kick.

4:03

Foul by Dean Winnard on Deon Burton, free kick awarded. Deon Burton produces a strike on goal direct from the free kick, blocked by Dean Winnard.

3:06

Luke Joyce fouled by Danny Kedwell, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Tom Aldred.

2:02

Deon Burton is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Paul Rachubka takes the indirect free kick.

1:45

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Matt Fish by Lee Molyneux. Direct free kick taken by Stuart Nelson.

0:00

The referee gets the game started.

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