Yeovil Town slipped out of the League Cup tonight at the first round stage, as further defensive sloppiness saw Gillingham triumph with a 2-1 away win. The Glovers shot themselves in the foot as a mix-up between Aaron Martin and Artur Krysiak saw Brennan Dickenson get a close range tap-in midway through the first half. Things looked to be back on track when Simon Gillett notched up his first goal since arriving from Nottingham Forest over the summer, but just three minutes later, Aaron Morris got time on the edge of the box to bring a loose ball down and fire home for what was to be the winning goal. Yeovil's misery was compounded when Seth Nana Twumasi was dismissed for a late challenge on Luke Norris, leaving them playing the final half hour with 10 men.
League Cup team selection saw five players changed from Saturday's game, along with a formation shuffle. Liam Davis had broken his wrist on Saturday, whilst AJ Leitch-Smith had a slight knee tweak, but the other changes were purely tactical, as Chris Weale, Brendan Moloney and Sam Foley made way for others to try their luck, with Artur Krysiak, Ben Nugent and Seth Nana Twumasi getting their full competitive debuts for the club, with wing-backs making a rare return as Twumasi and Nathan Smith occupied the wide slots.
It was a scrappy opening 20 minutes during which both sides struggled to get a foothold, but when a game starts tightly the last thing you want to do is to gift the opposition a goal. Aaron Martin tried to shield a ball back to Artur Krysiak, and the two dithered over who should take the ball. Instead Gillingham striker Brennan Dickenson decided he was going to grab it, nipping between them for an easy tap-in and the opening goal.
Yeovil actually perked up a bit after that goal, putting a bit more pressure on Gillingham in the lead-up to half time than they'd managed whilst the game was goalless. A Simon Gillett cross into the box saw Aaron Martin try to make amends, but his header was cleared off the line by Leon Legge. Then in the closing minutes Kieffer Moore produced a low drive that Glenn Morris tipped around his post for a corner.
The second half saw more of the same, with Yeovil pressing but perhaps not creating enough clear-cut chances to really worry Gillingham. However, 11 minutes into the second half, a bit of free kick magic drew them level. Joe Edwards had been fouled by Luke Norris, and from that dead ball, Nathan Smith's dummy was worked well for Simon Gillett to move quickly behind him and fire the ball direct into the back of the net.
That should have been the signal for Yeovil to turn the screw, but instead it was the signal for Gillingham to quickly score again - three minutes and 12 seconds after Gillett's equaliser. Aaron Martin had been put under pressure as he had to clear the ball off his own goal line, and when the ball was recycled back to the edge of the box, Aaron Morris wasn't picked up and the midfielder had the time and space to bring the ball down and control it before firing home to restore the away side's lead.
Matters for Yeovil got worse when Seth Nana Twumasi - who was making his first competitive start for the club - went in late on Gillingham striker Luke Norris. The player's writhing on the floor, coupled with his team-mates surrounding referee Darren Sheldrake seemed to be enough for the Surrey official to produce a straight red card, and Yeovil were down to ten men. That forced a substitution to rebalance the formation a little as Yeovil finished the game in a 4-3-2 line-up, and although they had a few reasonable chances to level the game, Gillingham also had chances to kill it off, and ended up playing out second half injury time with a bit of keep-ball to comfortably run down the clock and see Yeovil Town head quickly and quietly out of the League Cup competition after just one game.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 1 Gillingham 2.
Scorers: Brennan Dickenson (0-1, 23 mins), Simon Gillett (1-1, 56 mins), Aaron Morris (1-2, 59 mins)
Yeovil Town (3-5-2):
12. Artur Krysiak,
5. Aaron Martin, 6. Jakub Sokolik, 20. Ben Nugent,
15. Seth Nana Twumasi 4. Joe Edwards, 8. James Berrett, 23. Simon Gillett, 3. Nathan Smith,
9. James Hayter, 13. Kieffer Moore.
1. Chris Weale, 2. Brendan Moloney, 18. Matteo Lanzoni, 16. Nathan Ralph (68 mins for James Hayter), 11. Sam Foley, 10 AJ Leitch-Smith (52 mins for James Berrett), 14. Sam Hoskins (77 mins for Kieffer Moore).
12. Glenn Morris
22. Josh Hare 4. John Egan 5. Kortney Hause 6. Leon Legge 3. Joe Martin
23. Bradley Dack 7. Doug Loft 15. Aaron Morris
24. Brennan Dickenson 19. Luke Norris
8. Jake Hessenthaler 9. Danny Kedwell (77 mins for Luke Norris) 14. Antonio German (46 mins for Brennan Dickenson) 18. Josh Pritchard 20. Callum Davies 25. Devante McKain 27. Tom Haddler
Yeovil Bookings: None. Red Card: Seth Nana Twumasi (serious foul play, 62 mins).
Gillingham Bookings: None.
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 52%; Shots: 11; Shots On Target: 6; Corners: 7; Fouls: 10.
Gillingham Match Statistics: Possession: 48%; Shots: 7; Shots On Target: 3; Corners: 4; Fouls: 9.
Referee: Darren Sheldrake (Surrey). Assistant Referees: Colin Lymer (Hampshire) and Mark Russell (Somerset). Fourth Official: Michael Mullarkey (Devon).
Attendance: 2,283 (including 191 Gillingham supporters).
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