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6 February 2013

Skipper upbeat despite Wanderers defeat...

Gills skipper Adam Barrett says the squad are more than capable of bouncing back at the first opportunity after suffering a 1-0 defeat to Wycombe Wanderers at Priestfield on Monday night.

A late strike from Matt McClure ensured Gillingham stayed second in the league table by a solitary point, and the centre-back said the side were too open throughout the second half.

He said: “I thought it was a game of two halves – in the first half we dominated and made a lot of chances, in the second half we had a lot but I also thought we looked ragged and very loose which we haven’t been this season as a team.

“We got very spread out and as a team we are disappointed to come away with a defeat – it was our chance to go top and we haven’t taken it so we are going to have to bounce back.

“They opened us up, they seemed to be picking up a lot of second balls and they have some dangerous players. They move the ball well and pass it well; Stuart Nelson played well and pulled off some good saves.

“We have got to take a lot of positives, we want to get the home form back on track but we will go again Saturday and look to get a result.”

On Saturday the Gills face Bradford at Valley Parade before travelling to York City next Tuesday evening, and Barrett said their four day stop might be exactly what the squad needs.

He said: “The Chairman has been good in keeping us up there for both games which is fantastic, I think for preparation that is the best thing. It’s a long journey and all games are important now so we want to make sure preparation is spot on.

“It will be a tough game with a big crowd but with our away form we will go up there full of confidence.

“They’re achievements in the cup everyone has to take their hats off to them – they have knocked out three Premier League teams and one over two legs which is outstanding.

“At this level Bradford is a big club – it’s one of those clubs where you just have to look at the amount of people that come through the gate week, in week out. It’s an attractive place to go and a nice ground but because of the cup exploits it puts a bit more focus on them I suppose.

“We have to use that to our advantage and hopefully put in a good professional performance. They might be the favourites now but we’ll concentrate on what we do, we’ll want to bounce back and we’ve done that very well this year.

“That’s the sign of a good team.”

Adam said because he feels teams are setting up differently to play the Gills the side sometimes find it difficult to break the opposition down, but said nobody should be downbeat considering the positive position the club are in.

He added: “We had such a fantastic start here and scoring a lot of goals, getting that first goal is crucial and if we had got it in the first half the game is different.

“Because you have been top for so long teams do come here and make it tough for you and we have struggled to break teams down and then they hit you on the counter attack.

“Teams set up differently against you definitely but you can’t put your finger on it. Away from home we have been so strong all season but we don’t want to look at it with doom and gloom – we want to put the home form right, we won the last one but we are having a fantastic season and we have to bounce back Saturday.

“It’s a massive game, we have 17 of them to go and we want to make sure we get promoted this year so we need to roll our sleeves up, pick the bones out of it and go again.

“We are in a great position, second in the table and if you had said we would be there in February just a point behind the leaders with a seven point cushion ahead of fourth then you would have bitten someone’s hand off.”

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