Gills 'keeper out to make amends against Norwich City

PUBLISHED: 12:06 23 September 2009 | UPDATED: 16:32 10 September 2010

Michael Bailey

Gillingham goalkeeper Simon Royce believes Norwich City will be on the end of another away day defeat when they arrive at the Priestfield Stadium on Saturday.

Gillingham goalkeeper Simon Royce believes Norwich City will be on the end of another away day defeat when they arrive at the Priestfield Stadium on Saturday.

While City were busy salvaging an excellent 2-2 draw with morning league leaders Charlton Athletic at Carrow Road on Saturday, the Gills prepared for the first of two games in less than a fortnight with the Canaries by suffering a 4-1 defeat at Leeds United - the team that took over from Charlton at the top of League One.

But the former Southend, Leicester and QPR stopper, pictured, expects the Gills to be a much harder proposition for Norwich, playing on their own turf.

“We won't get too down about it,” said Royce. “We lost our first few games of the season but recently we have looked solid.

“It was a shame that against Leeds we looked a bit short on a couple of occasions at the back, but going forward we look a match for anyone really and if we can put that right then I think we'll be OK.

“We are not going to dwell on it too much though. We have another big game against Norwich and because of our form at home we can turn them over.”

Norwich face the Gills in league action on Saturday, before making the trip again in the second round (south) of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy on Tuesday, October 6.

The Canaries' poor form on the road has been a problem for several seasons, although the ship has been somewhat steadied by Paul Lambert.

The controversial defeat at MK Dons last week, Norwich's last game away from Carrow Road, was their first league loss under his stewardship.

And ninth place Gillingham also promise to give a stiff examination of the Canaries' away day credentials, having scored 10 goals in taking three wins from four at the Priestfield - conceding just one goal in the process, in their 1-0 defeat to Hartlepool.

The Gills thrashed Swindon 5-0 on the opening day of the season - a result that usually would have bagged all the headlines, had it not been for City's own meltdown against Colchester - and also humbled Championship side Plymouth Argyle at home in the Carling Cup.

Royce, 38, is confident the Gills have plenty to offer League One after bouncing back from the fourth tier of English football at the first attempt last season via last season's Wembley play-off final.

“We are going to give ourselves a better account than we did last time around in League One because the squad is looking good,” he said. “It's a young squad and there is a little bit of experience in there.”

There is also a bit of quality at the Priestfield, with 22-year-old Canadian striker Simeon Jackson already on eight goals for the season in all competitions - something a Norwich defence set to be without the injured Michael Nelson will have to cope with.

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