Gills boss discusses Lee injury headache...
Martin Allen admitted following the game on Saturday that he had a dilemma on his hands regarding whether or not to allow Charlie Lee to return to the pitch against York.
Lee fell to the ground after a nasty head to head challenge in the second half and had to receive treatment from both physios at the club before he eventually got back to his feet.
The player wanted to continue, but after a lengthy chat, and advice from his medical staff, Martin asked him to come off for further assessment before deciding he was OK to return for the rest of the game.
Martin said afterwards:
“It was probably the hardest decision I have ever had to make on a footballing matter. The doctor said no, the player said yes so what do you do?
“The buck stops with me; I had to bring him off. It wasn’t right to put him on, if anything would have happened can you imagine how I would have been feeling?
“He looked at me and said he wanted to go on and I suppose that typifies the spirit, the unity and the camaraderie at our club at the moment. What Charlie did to go on and play his part was pretty awesome.
“I don’t know if he was knocked spark out but it was a tough challenge head to head and it certainly wasn’t a nice few minutes.
“The doctor didn’t say he couldn’t but he advised that he shouldn’t go back on so that’s why I told him to sit down. I had a real dilemma and didn’t know what to do and you have to work out what is best for the football club.
“The players are people and there is a point where they are my players and yes we want to win the game but the health and well-being of our footballers is more important than the result of a game of football.
“We put him on and he played in front of us on the left hand side. It does typify the spirit; they really are a fantastic dressing room of blokes and a really good group of people.
“If you paid your money to watch them you would know that they are giving us everything. They care, they are not big time. They practice; they are not late for training and are upset they haven’t played as well as what we can.
“They want to do better; they are not jumping in big flashy cars and giving it large. It’s our job on and off the field to help them now and we will review Charlie on Monday to see how he is.
“He went on and did really well, he made things happen bit I was worried sick in the technical area that he was going to be OK. When we scored we were going to take him off, defend and play with 10 men.
“It was a horrible position for me to be in, you have fans willing you to win and I’m looking at our player thinking I hope he is OK. If we had had another sub we would have substituted him of course but he was adamant that he wanted to play and I just went with it.”