Lovell | "The boys were magnificent"

Lovell pleased with performance at Priestfield against table-topping Peterborough.

Gillingham Manager Steve Lovell was happy with the performance of his players but was frustrated that Posh managed to get back in the game so soon after the Gills took the lead before going on to claim all three points in a 4-2 win.

Two stunning goals from Callum Reilly and Mark Byrne had put the Gills ahead within ten minutes of the second half after slipping behind to a Walker goal midway through the first half.

But an almost instant equaliser from Dembele and another goal in quick succession, this time from Toney, put the Posh ahead within the hour. The game was sealed just before injury time when Cooke slotted home from close range to deny the Gills anything from the game.

A response was expected from Lovell after disappointing performances against Wimbledon and Rochdale, and the Gills gaffer was pleased with the display throughout the game.

“From the Gillingham end, we put in a good performance. I take a lot of heart and a lot of positives from today. I’m miserable because we didn’t get the result, but not the performance.

“We have got to do better when we’re in possession of the ball, especially with the boys that they had – they’re very quick on the counter attack.

“In the first half Tomas Holy made two or three really good saves to keep us in the game. But in the second half I don’t think he had a lot to do – only pick the ball out of the net.

“We will get out of it [current form]. Our boys are fantastic lads – they work and they give everything.”

Lovell felt that Dembele’s instant equaliser after the Gills had taken the lead was the decisive goal in the contest.

“At the end of the game Steve Evans said he thought we had them [when the Gills took the lead] – you could see his relief when they got their second goal.

“It was a great ball into the box and they took it well – it kick-started them.

“At the moment we’re being punished for every little thing that we don’t cover and it was the same again today.”

Finally, Steve provided an injury update and commented on Regan Charles-Cook’s performance before he was forced off soon into the second half.

“Charles-Cook was brilliant for the time he was on the pitch, one of the best players out there today – he makes us tick. He’s an excellent player and I think all the players respect what he brings to us.

“Hopefully, he’ll be alright for next Saturday, He just went over on his ankle; he tried at half time to put ice on it and have a go second half but we didn’t want to take too many risks. Same with Callum Reilly.

“We’ve got a few walking wounded in there again, but we will prepare for next Saturday.”