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Gaffer at the Weekend

Steve Evans answers some questions following Saturday's game against Northampton.

25 April 2021

The Gills boss delivers his regular Sunday round-up following Saturday's draw with Northampton.

Q: You summed up your thoughts in post-match yesterday. Was your overriding feeling more of frustration or disappointment?
A1: Without doubt disappointment, because for these lads to lose out on the play-offs due to poor defending in the last two Saturday matches is cruel.
Both performances deserved comfortable victories but our defending at times was simply not good enough.
Q: You said Football can be a game of "what ifs." That certainly can be applied to the last two Saturdays. How do you deal with such setbacks as a group of staff?
A2: We know exactly the problem areas and they can only be addressed in the summer window.
Let us be very clear, the group of players who only came together in January have been outstanding. Had this group been together since last August, statistics tell us we would have been fighting for promotion.
We as a club must learn we cannot report for a new season with six players and no training facilities, that does not build you the base you need.
Q: Back to work on Monday. Is it just a case of resetting the focus and putting everything into getting three points on Saturday?
A3: Absolutely. We will now prepare for our trip to Burton Albion next Saturday.
There is much work to be done and to finish the season with two wins must be the priority.
Obviously I will be meeting with the Chairman in the next week or so and there is much to be discussed.
Q: No midweek game; will you have chance for perhaps the last time this season to do some scouting on opposition teams/players?
A4: I will certainly be watching games this next few weeks, it’s my responsibility to do that and that is a big reason we came up with so many talented lads who cost nothing.
With the least resources in League 1 these lads have been, on the whole, tremendous. I look at Bristol Rovers and Swindon Town relegated versus the budgets in place and something is far wrong. Northampton Town are another who are likely to be relegated and I feel for their Chairman who has supplied a top half budget.
What it demonstrates is that whilst big budgets are a massive help, it is not the only factor for sure.
Q: Gerald Sithole made his pro debut yesterday. I'm sure you are very pleased for him; he looked lively when he came on?
A5: It was great to see Gerald come onto the pitch. I really like the kid but he has a lot of hard work to do but his smile, energy and willingness to work hard are infectious.
He has a bright future if he stays focused with his ability and frightening pace.
Q: It's Burton next. What type of game are you expecting up there?
A6: Every game in league 1 is tough so we can expect another tough test.

We are in really good form, performance wise, other than big individual errors, but hopefully we can focused enough to do our jobs thoroughly.

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