Gills Manager hoping recent injury concerns will not be long term

Peter Taylor is hopeful that the injuries picked up by Chris Whelpdale and Danny Hollands during Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Peterborough will not be long term problems.

Both were substituted before the end of the first half with Myles Weston and Steven Gregory coming on in their place, and the Manager is hoping the duo will not be out of action for too long.

Speaking after the game he said: “It’s a difficult situation for any club of our size that all of a sudden you have a squad of players, you lose a load and then have five matches in 14 days.

“That’s going to be tight for all of us, but looking at the two injuries we’ve got I’m hopeful Whelpdale’s is more of a kick whereas Hollands is more of a knee injury I think.

“We can do with some other players getting fit now.”

One player who has taken advantage of the situation is Jake Hessenthaler who made his home debut at the weekend.

Peter was asked how similar he is to father Andy, who Taylor has coached and managed several times over the years.

He said: “I never told Andy that I was going to start Jake but I spoke to him earlier in the week and he said he was the legend going around the pitch which is a proud moment for him and I thought what a coincidence.

“I had Andy as a player when he was 21 years of age – Jake’s starting off a little bit earlier! He’s a little bit the same; he will drive me mad like Andy did but he still makes some good and bad decisions.

“He’s lovely on the ball so he might be slightly better than Andy on the ball but also if he gets half of the heart that Andy had then he will be a player.”

Britt Assombalonga levelled the game up at 2-2 with just seconds left to play, with Cody McDonald having seen a one on one chance go begging with Robert Olejnik getting enough on the effort to push it wide.

Peter said: “I think when you are through that long and you think about it you must go high, you can’t go low because you never see a goalkeeper jump high.

“He will guess that the shot will go low, that’s a shame because if he had dinked it at the last second, and it’s easy for me to say that here, but it would have been a great goal and a match winner.”

Myles Weston played his part in ensuring the Gills got their noses in front, his cross finding the ever deadly McDonald who did brilliantly to divert his header in to the corner.

Peter commented on the winger and how hard he had to work during a difficult afternoon.

He said: “The players of course have got to work hard, that’s what the game is all about but there are certain players in there putting extra effort in.

"Myles Weston for instance had to play, at times, a bit more defensive which is not his game.

“Certainly when he gets the ball and takes people on you can see what a dangerous player he is.

"I was really pleased with a lot of the younger players - Bradley Dack is just coming in to the team and runs all over the place, Jake Hessenthaler wanted the ball in tight situations which was good.

“Jake had a bit of a calf strain so we had to get him off and then Callum came on and did a great job for us.

“Stuart Nelson pulled off a couple of brilliant saves, so as much as we are disappointed because it’s so late, we are realistic that Peterborough opened us up quite a lot of times and it was last ditch defending but it’s an area we need to be a little better at.

“Saying that when you play against a team of this quality you are going to get tested.”

Watch Peter’s post match interview by clicking here.