Today broke a spell of fifteen matches and 109 days since Coventry City last won a match as the Sky Blues overcame fellow relegation rivals Gillingham 2-1 at the Ricoh Arena thanks to goals from Kwame Thomas and George Thomas.
Coventry City Starting XI:
Burge, Kelly-Evans, Clarke, Turnbull, Haynes, Foley, Rose, Reilly, G Thomas, Tudgay, K Thomas
Coventry City Substitutes:
Charles-Cook, Rawson, Bigirimana, Jones, Lameiras, Reid, Yakubu
Gillingham Starting XI:
Nelson, Jackson, Herd, Ehmer, Oshilaja, Donelly, McDonald, Dack, Byrne, Wright, Emmanuel-Thomas
List, Garmston, Martin, Parker, Holy, Hessenthaler, Osadebe
Unlike recent weeks, Coventry were playing some good football. Just 10 minutes in Ryan Haynes went on one of his trademark left wing runs and put in a ball to the far post which Marcus Tudgay got on the end of to head across goal where Kwame Thomas was waiting to bundle it over the line for his 2nd goal in a week.
Only 4 minutes later and the ball fell to central midfielder Andy Rose 20 yards out, his shot took a deflection and fell straight into the path of George Thomas who stuck it straight in the bottom corner to not only put the Sky Blues two ahead but also score his first ever professional league goal since coming through the academy.
Coventry nearly had a third a couple of minutes later when a peach of a cross from Dion Kelly-Evans gave a free header for Tudgay who hit the side netting. George Thomas was at it again near half time muscling off the defender to get the shot away from just inside the box but Nelson stayed strong to make sure the Gills were still within a fighting shout at the break. It was all Coventry for the first 45 minutes.
Half Time Score – Coventry City 2-0 Gillingham
One of the more bizarre substitutes occured at the interval as Lee Burge made way for his goalkeeping rival Reice Charles-Cook. Even though he appeared to be playing fine and fully fit, it must have been something fans didn’t notice which meant Coventry were left with only 2 substitutions for outfield players for the rest of the match.
Max Ehmer brought the Kent based side back into the game 10 minutes into the second period after City failed to deal with a corner. In an attempt to seal the game, the Sky Blues made their final two substitutions as both goalscorers or both Thomas’ if you will were replaced by Jodi Jones and Yakubu who made an instant impact by playing a ball in from the right to Callum Reilly, the Burton loanee cleared the bar somehow from a very short distance.
Then the Yak himself had a chance to bury the game but on the turn and on his weaker foot he struck a pea roller into the arms of Nelson. It was a nervy final few minutes as Gillingham were throwing the kitchen sink at the hosts, they had a disallowed goal which their fans didn’t realise didn’t count for about a minute until you heard the cheers silenced when Charles-Cook lined up for a free kick.
Coventry did however manage to hold out for a much needed victory, they are still rooted to bottom of the league, 9 points off safety but now have the monkey off their back and the freedom to play football. Gillingham on the other hand are now just 1 point clear of relegation and are without a win in 10.