Gillingham defenders Simon King and Garry Richards are close to returning to training.

King missed the whole of last season with an ankle problem and has yet to feature this term while Richards picked up a foot injury towards the end of the last campaign.

Gills boss Andy Hessenthaler told the Kent Messenger: "It's very positive with those two, I've got to say. We have been patient with them. Simon's one we have been really patient with, and they are both working very hard."

He added: "I believe Simon could be involved with us in a proper training session in the next two or three weeks, which is really encouraging, and maybe Garry the same. Garry is having a scan this week to hopefully give him the all-clear and then once he is back running, then he won't be far away."

However, winger Andy Barcham could face a lengthy spell on the sidelines

Hessenthaler added: "It's a bit frustrating with him because we thought he would be back quite a few weeks ago. It's one of those ankle injuries where we have got to learn off the Simon King situation. It's hard to put a timescale on it because the lad is still feeling it at the moment. We have just got to be patient."

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