Gillingham silencedby Dickov

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The Independent Football

George Weah has scored nine goals in English football and four of those have come against Gillingham. The Liberian superstar scored twice last night as Manchester City came from behind to gain the upper hand before Andy Thomson completed a double of his own to take this Worthington Cup tie into extra-time.

George Weah has scored nine goals in English football and four of those have come against Gillingham. The Liberian superstar scored twice last night as Manchester City came from behind to gain the upper hand before Andy Thomson completed a double of his own to take this Worthington Cup tie into extra-time.

Goals from Paul Dickov and Mark Kennedy in the extra period eventually gave the Premiership side victory. Revenge may have been on the menu, but it was not the main course last night. Gillingham, denied promotion by City in a memorable play-off final two season ago, saw the job through last season and are now settling down into the upper half of English football. City had not won for four games before this second-round second-leg match, including their 1-1 draw with these adversaries last week, and in the first half looked second best in most departments.

If City could point to the absence of Paulo Wanchope, through a knee injury, as a mitigating factor in their below-par start, Gillingham had to do without their leading light Carl Asaba, out with an Achilles problem. While City could call upon the wiles of Weah as an understudy, Gillingham had rely upon Marlon King, the former Barnet striker.

After 26 minutes, City's increasing hesitancy cost them dearly. Paul Ritchie, under minimal pressure from King, could only head Guy Butters' long pass into the path of Andy Hessenthaler. The Gills' player-manager immediately played a short pass into the stride of Andy Thomson, who beat Gerard Wiekens before placing his shot past Nicky Weaver.

Joe Royle, the City manager, had acted swiftly to his team's poor start by introducing Kennedy in an attack-minded substitution shortly before the break. Within three minutes of the restart the Irishman flighted a corner towards the near post, where Weah headed in beyond VinceBartram.

Five minutes later Kennedy, receiving a short pass from Danny Tiatto, once more skinned Nicky Southall down the left wing. The Republic of Ireland international composed himself before crossing low across goal to the Liberian, who stabbed in his third goal in a week against the Gills.

But Gillingham know all about resilience and nine minutes from time Thomson swivelled to volley home after Butters headed down Hessenthaler's clipped centre from the left. City regained the lead after 113 minutes when Ian Bishop played the ball through to Dickov, whose finish was clinical. Kennedy added the fourth a minute from the end.

Gillingham (3-5-2): Bartram; Ashby (Patterson, 84), Hope, Butters; Southall, Smith, Hessenthaler, Browning, Edge; King, Thomson. Substitutes not used: Mitten (gk), Saunders, Pennock, Lewis.

Manchester City (4-4-2): Weaver; Crooks, Haaland (Bishop, 50), Jobson, Ritchie (Kennedy, 37); Whitley, Wiekens, Horlock, Tiatto; Dickov, Weah. Substitutes not used: Wright (gk), Granville, Wright-Phillips.

Referee: R Furnandiz (Doncaster).

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