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Lovell | "I'm really proud of them"

Gaffer heaps praise on his team after deserved 1-0 win over Scunthorpe.

16 February 2019


Lovell | "I'm really proud of them"

Gaffer heaps praise on his team after deserved 1-0 win over Scunthorpe.

16 February 2019

Lovell hopes win kick-starts Gills side for final 14 games of the season.

Mark Byrne’s winner left Steve Lovell a happy man when he spoke to the media, with the Gills claiming a clean sheet and all three points to move out of the relegation zone following a 1-0 win over Scunthorpe.

Gillingham dominated the first half and were perhaps unfortunate not to have killed off the game but did lead at the break with Byrne slamming home from 25 yards after superb trickery from Leo Da Silva Lopes on his first start of the Club.

Lovell said he was relieved to get a crucial victory with three tough away games on the horizon, and praised the defensive resilience of his side with Captain Gaby Zakuani ruled out for the season.

“It’s a feeling of relief that you get the three points but I’m also really pleased with the way the boys played, especially first half," Steve said.

“Everybody rolled their sleeves up – the second half just showed the character of everybody. We defended really well as a unit and restricted them to very few efforts on goal which is what we have to do.

“With the anxiety of wanting those three points sometimes you drop deep but the last five or six minutes I felt fine – I didn’t think they caused us too many problems at all.

“I felt really proud of them today because it hasn’t been easy the past few weeks.”

Leo Da Silva Lopes was making his first start for the Club and Lovell was delighted with the impact the youngster had, predicting even better things to come as he gets up to full speed.

“It’s hard for him as he hasn’t played a lot of football. It was perhaps a gamble to play him today but he is a talented footballer and he showed that.

“He will get better as we go along with the understanding of League One football where you are going to get clobbered if you hang on to it. He’s an excellent player and he did a job.

“He is a confident player, but I think he has to pass it simple at times too or he will get hurt. We got a good shift out of him and that will only do him the power of good moving forward.”

The win moves the Gills out of the relegation zone and up to 17th position but Lovell is urging his side to kick on from this win starting at Sunderland on Tuesday night.

“There will be a buzz around the place. We’re really looking forward to Sunderland which will be a different mental approach now we’ve got this behind us.

“We go there in a different frame of mind and it’s important that we push on. We want to get to 50 points as quickly as possible and if we battle like that then we soon will.

“It’s very close and it is going to be a tight end to the season, but we’ve done it before and we’ll do it again.”

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