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Byrne | "It was a bad day at the office"

Gills midfielder disappointed as Walsall leave Kent with all three points.

19 January 2019

Mark Byrne concedes Walsall deserved all three points following convincing win.

Gillingham midfielder Mark Byrne couldn’t hide his frustration as Gills slipped to a 3-0 defeat at home to Walsall on Saturday afternoon, as an Andy Cook hat-trick ensured Walsall went home up the M1 with the three points.

Walsall deserved their victory after a clinical display put the game to bed just after half-time. Byrne, who was named man of- the match on Saturday afternoon, admitted that Walsall deserved the points.

Talking after the game, Byrne said: “I don’t think we deserved anything today, they were the better team. First half we gave away sloppy goals and that always seems to be the problem. We were thinking at half time that we could get a goal and get back in to the game and then two minutes in to the second half they score another goal, another sloppy goal.

“That seems to be the problem at the moment, that we are giving goals away to easy. It was a bad day.”

Andy Cook scored his first hat-trick since moving to Walsall from Tranmere in the summer, but Byrne believes the goals could have been avoided, after a week of working on how to deal with the threats of the Saddlers front man.

“We done all the work during the week, the gaffer told us during the week what the game plan would be, saying that Andy Cook would peal to the back post etc and then the first two goals are him peeling to the back post,” he added. “These are the errors we need to cut out and we’ve got to be more vocal and help each other out.

“You’ve got try and have the courage to get on the ball. Just having a bit of patience, we are in a bad situation and we need to start picking up points to get out of this.”

Byrne added: “There are 18 games left of the season, and I’d rather be getting three points on a Saturday then having a good cup run. For me, the league is the most important thing, so we need to start getting up that league because we don’t want to be in the scrap at the end of the season.”

Gillingham are next in action on Saturday afternoon when they head to the Liberty Stadium to face Swansea City in the fourth round of the FA Cup and Byrne can’t wait to move on from the Walsall defeat.

He said: “It seems that the teams we are not expected to well against we do well. It’s the teams around us that we need to be picking up points from but it’s a game we need to look forward and you never know what could happen in the FA Cup before a big game against Accrington on Tuesday.”

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