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Georgia v Gibraltar: Match Preview

Gibraltar go into tonight’s game vs Georgia looking for an improvement on their previous two meetings against their opponents.

Photo © William Gracia

Both sides are without a point in Group D, with Gib ahead of Georgia on goal difference, having played a game less. However, this evening’s match in Tbilisi will prove to be a difficult one, with the hosts only having lost once on home soil since the beginning of 2018.

The match, which kicks off at 6pm Gibraltarian time (8pm in Georgia), is the first part of a double-header, where Gib also travel to Dublin to play Ireland on Monday night. The two away matches sees Julio Ribas side travel across the length and breadth of Europe for two games in just over 72 hours, and will be a test of the players fitness – however it is a challenge the team should thrive off.

For Georgia, their undoubted star player is Giorgi Chakvetadze. The 19-year old, currently at Gent, has five goals in seven appearances for the national side, and has been attracting interest from top sides across Europe. The midfielder is tipped to be the next big thing in Georgian football and possibly a star in Europe as well, so he will be one to watch out for. Tonight’s hosts also have Levan Mchedlidze, who plies his trade in Serie A with Empoli, but Tornike Okriashvili, who scored in both previous encounters against Gib, has not made the squad for this round of fixtures.

Gibraltar have the luxury of a fully fit 23-man squad to pick from at the time of writing, with no injuries believed to be affecting the side. Tjay De Barr was carrying an injury for the latter stages of the season, but the two game ban he received for 10 yellow cards domestically means he has had nearly a month without a match, and should be fit and raring to go at the Georgian defence. Meanwhile, the likes of Joseph Chipolina, Lee Casciaro and Roy Chipolina had been injury concerns, but appeared to be training as normal and would be expected to be part of the eleven this evening.

Betting*:

As usual, Gibraltar go into the game as massive underdogs, with odds as great as 80/1 that they can win today. The hosts Georgia are a best price of 1/14 to win, and as short as 1/33 in places, while a draw is generally around about 14/1 on average.

Chakvetadze, who scored four of his five goals for his country in the Nations League, is 5/4 to score anytime tonight and is likely to be one of their biggest threats, while for Gib, the likes of De Barr (13/1), Joseph Chipolina (14/1) and Liam Walker (13/1) are good odds to get a goal for Ribas side. A good in-play bet may be to wait for Reece Styche (currently 17/2 anytime score) to come off the bench if he doesn’t start, and get bigger odds on him scoring.

If you fancy there to be goals at both ends, BTTS is currently a best price of 5/2, while if you think it’ll be a similar game to Gib’s 1-0 loss to Ireland in March, under 2.5 goals is also a 5/2 shot this evening.

FG’s Predicted XI:

Goldwin; Sergeant, J. Chipolina, R. Chipolina, Olivero; Annesley; Casciaro, Bardon, Hernandez, Walker; De Barr

*Odds correct at the time of writing, and taken from Oddschecker

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Match Preview: Georgia – Gibraltar

Gibraltar take on Georgia in Tbilisi tonight, as the national team plays its penultimate European Qualifier.

Jeff Wood’s side got through their training session yesterday without suffering any injuries, and all 23 players will be available for selection in the game at the Dinamo Arena.

Ahead of the game, both Wood, and captain Roy Chipolina talked about how the home side are understandably strong favourites tonight, but that they will try to use that in their favour. After they beat Scotland 1-0 in their last fixture, and did not allow their opposition a single shot on target, the likes of Lee Casciaro and Jake Gosling will have as tough a job as always in leading the team’s attacking play.

In the reverse fixture, Georgia beat Gibraltar 3-0 in Faro, in what was former manager Allen Bula’s last ‘home’ game. Since then, both teams have changed their manager, and new Head Coach Kakhaber Tskhadadze would no doubt like to see his team add to the five goals they have scored in the qualifiers.

Tonight’s game, which kicks off at 6pm in Gib, is live on both GBC, Sky Sports 2 and Canal Plus Futbol.

Betting:

As expected, Georgia are huge favourites to win the game, with Bet365 pricing the home side at 1/25 to pick up all three points.

For Gibraltar, a shock victory comes with odds of 50/1, while the draw is currently 20/1.

A repeat of the 3-0 scoreline from the game in Faro is priced at 4/1, while if you feel Georgia will win, but that Gibraltar will get on the score-sheet for the third time in five away qualifiers, you can get odds of 3/1.


Gibraltar play Georgia in Tbilisi at 6pm Gibraltarian time tonight. As always, if you can not watch the game live, you can follow our coverage of the game on @FGScoreCentre



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27-man Gibraltar squad announced

Gibraltar manager Jeff Wood has announced a preliminary 27-man squad for the last two qualifiers, against Georgia and Scotland.

There are no massive shocks in the squad, with Scunthorpe’s Scott Wiseman having missed the last three weeks of club football as he continues to recover from the injury he suffered while still at Preston. The full back completed 90 minutes of football last night for the first time since early August though, and hopefully is well on the way to a full recovery.

Shaw Lane Aquaforce striker Adam Priestley fails to make the squad once again, after Jeff Wood cited fitness concerns with the former Farsley striker, but there is a return to the national squad for Lincoln striker George Cabrera, a mainstay of the national team in the pre-UEFA days. Cabrera spent practically all of last season injured, and will have to battle to make the final 23-man squad.

The midfield is packed with familiar faces to fans of Gibraltarian football, and barring injury the likes of Liam Walker, Jake Gosling and Anthony Bardon will be guaranteed a place in the final 23. Lincoln midfielder Bardon is carrying a knock, but is expected to return to club football this weekend and should be fit enough for a place in the squad.

The non-inclusion of Wiseman may raise some eyebrows, but with these being the final two games, and the full-back clearly not at full fitness, Wood may have decided to allow another player the chance to show what he can do, especially as the team looks to develop for future matches. With only eight defenders chosen, it could be the case that they all make the final 23-man squad, and at most one players may be dropped when the squad is trimmed before the two games.

As for the goalkeepers, Jordan Perez and Jamie Robba are certainties when picking a national squad. With the third choice goalkeeper often going to a younger keeper, Liam Neale is likely to make most of the upcoming squads, with the Gibraltar United keeper highly thought of by many in local football.

With the Under 19’s away in France on their own qualifying duty next month, some of the youngsters who Wood may have wanted to look at will instead be away gaining valuable experience against the hosts, Netherlands and Liechtenstein.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Jordan Perez, Jamie Robba, Liam Neale

Defenders: Roy Chipolina, Joseph Chipolina, Ryan Casciaro, JC Garcia, Jack Sergeant, Justin Rovegno, Erin Barnett, Jamie Bosio

Midfielders: Liam Walker, Anthony Bardon, Jake Gosling, Aaron Payas, Jeremy Lopez, Jesse Victory, Robert Guilling, Brian Perez, Liam Clarke

Attackers: Lee Casciaro, Kyle Casciaro, JP Duarte, Mikey Yome, Jamie Coombes, George Cabrera, Evan Green


Gibraltar play Georgia in Tbilisi on October 8th, and then face Scotland in Faro on October 11th. Remember to follow us on Facebook and through our two Twitter pages, @footballgib and @fgscorecentre