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Priestfield Stadium (ATT 6,964) 17th October 2004 - Kick off 13:00 Ref: P Armstrong

Gillingham Gillingham vs Sheffield United Sheff Utd

Shaw inspires Blades win

By Patrick Goss.   Last Updated: 17/10/04 2:50pm

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Paul Shaw inspired Sheffield United to a 3-1 victory against his former side Gillingham at the Priestfield Stadium.

Shaw scored a brace and played a part in a fine third for Michael Tonge, before Chris Morgan's dismissal sparked a mini revival for the hosts.

The Blades defender was shown a second yellow card for a stupid clash with Darius Henderson, and a minute later Leigh Bromby put through his own net to give Gillingham a route back into the game.

The Gills can have little complaint at the defeat, with their visitors looking sprightly throughout.

It took Shaw just nine minutes to unlock his former side, volleying home with aplomb from a matter of yards after shattering a sluggish offside trap.

Paddy Kenny kept his side ahead with a fine save to deny a dipping Adam Nowland volley from outside the box, and Shaw was unlucky not to double the advantage when a cunning curling shot brought a smart stop from Steve Banks.

Alan Quinn drew another good stop from Banks, whilst Darren Byfield twice had his route through to goal blocked when well placed.

Player-manager Andy Hessenthaler looked every minute of his 39 years when he was put clear through, but did not have the legs to get clear and his tepid effort was simple for Kenny.

In the second half Shaw finally grabbed his second courtesy of some weak defending from the hosts.

Just shy of the hour mark the lively Andy Liddell raced down the right flank untended and his low cross was simply bundled to a stop by Richard Hope, leaving Shaw a simple tap-in.

Two soon became three when a Gillingham corner broke down, Shaw spread play to Liddell who shimmied through the middle and played the perfect ball for Tonge to race onto and thrash high past Banks' despairing dive.

Gillingham needed a spark to lift their fans, and it was provided by Morgan, who reacted to an innocuous clash with Henderson, earning both players yellow cards - and the Sheffield man his marching orders because of an earlier offence.

Bromby put through his own net with a bizarre diving header that left Kenny a spectator, but it was scant consolation for Gillingham, who must realise they had been outplayed by a more accomplished side.

Matches

Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bournemouth 39 73
2 Watford 39 72
3 Middlesbrough 39 72
4 Norwich City 39 70
5 Derby County 39 67
6 Ipswich Town 39 67
7 Brentford 39 66
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 39 65
9 Nottingham Forest 39 57
10 Blackburn Rovers 39 54
11 Charlton Athletic 39 54
12 Sheffield Wednesday 39 53
13 Leeds United 39 52
14 Cardiff City 39 51
15 Birmingham City 38 47
16 Brighton and Hove Albion 39 45
17 Bolton Wanderers 39 45
18 Huddersfield Town 39 44
19 Reading 38 44
20 Fulham 39 43
21 Rotherham United 39 40
22 Wigan Athletic 39 35
23 Millwall 39 33
24 Blackpool 39 23

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