Gillingham must make do without Jack Payne for the next month through injury and that could be cause for concern.
Medial ligament damage to his knee will leave him sidelined for several weeks.
Payne may only be 19 but he is fast becoming a key figure for the Gills and his brief absences this season have already proved costly.
The youngster’s substitution at Rotherham, because of illness, was followed by a monumental collapse and his departure at the weekend preceded another break down in the team’s ability to defend.
His knack of breaking up play as the extra man in midfield has frustrated many teams this season. His bite and appetite to win the ball back has been key to keeping teams quiet.
With Payne doing the dog work in a five man midfield it should also allow the likes of Curtis Weston and Charlie Lee to break forward and help Danny Kedwell upfront. Unfortunately that didn’t quite work out against Shrewsbury, but that wasn’t Payne’s fault.
When he went off at Rorherham there was a tidal wave of attack that the Gills just didn’t look capable of stopping. It ended 3-0, it could have been four or five.
So what will Gills boss Andy Hessenthaler do now that he has lost his barrier between the defence and midfield?
Reverting to 442 and adding an extra attacker hasn’t worked for the Gills so far this season, but now they have Chris Whelpdale back and, most important fit, it gives them a proper option on the flank. Luke Rooney, fired up by an impressive showing last week, adds another natural option out wide. It means Hessenthaler is not putting round pegs into square holes anymore.
If Hessenthaler wants a replacement for Payne then his best bet looks to be Danny Jackman. He was unlucky not to start the season after doing as well, if not better, than Joe Martin at left-back in pre-season.
He can play midfield, albeit ideally at the left side of a diamond, but no doubt he would just be pleased to be off the subs’ bench again.
It all seems to be resting on whether Hessenthaler can do business in the transfer market.
If a new striker arrives, and the signs are looking more promising now, he is likely to go 4-4-2 against Accrington at the weekend, with Kedwell being joined by the new man.
At least Hessenthaler has options but he will be cursing the loss of another key man. First Adam Birchall and now Payne.
Danny Kedwell apparently has a bang on the knee. Fans will be praying they don’t lose him as well.
And with no spare keeper Ross Flitney better be careful or the Gills may be bringing coach Ron Hillyard out of retirement, although Hessenthaler does rate Matt Fish as an excellent shot-stopper.