Frustrating night for Gills boss.
Gillingham Manager Steve Lovell was left frustrated as his Gills side slipped to a narrow 1-0 defeat against an improving Bristol Rovers side at Priestfield on Tuesday evening.
Jonson Clarke-Harris’ fierce strike early in the second half proved to be the difference as the points went back to Bristol in a game where Gills struggled to break down a resolute Rovers backline.
Reflecting on the performance, Lovell said: “We huffed and puffed but I was disappointed with how we started the first half because I thought it took us a long time to get into the game. As the game settled down I thought we looked the better side, having more possession and moving the ball and we had really good balls going into the box, but we didn’t make the most of them."
Lovell continued: “I’m disappointed because we’ve had a nice little run going, we just couldn’t get the ball in the net tonight and I think had we been out there for another hour we still wouldn’t have scored.”
The game was decided by a moment of magic from the in-form Jonson Clarke-Harris when he rocketed a shot in from 30 yards and Steve Lovell was full of praise for the Gas striker.
“A little bit of quality has won the game. It was a tremendous goal, we’ve said this year that we have given teams goals, but when someone sticks it in the top corner from that range you hold your hands up. He is in a rich vein of form and deserved his goal.
“First half today I thought we looked nervous on the ball, I don’t know why, but it happens, and it is good to get that out of our system.”
Gills slipped down to 17th after the defeat but remain three points above the relegation zone, and Lovell remains confident in his Gillingham side, who had been on a good run before Tuesday’s defeat.
Lovell said: “There’s nine games to go and they are all massive games. There are a lot of teams in the mix, had we won tonight we would have gone 12th. I’ve got a lot of faith in the boys, just because we lost the game 1-0 tonight I’m not going to get carried away and worry about it, because coming in to this game tonight I was quite happy with everything that was going on, and I still am.”