Steve Lovell says players will be well prepared ahead of Saturday's visit of Burton.
“There is nothing like winning a game of football,” reflected Gillingham caretaker manager Steve Lovell, who returns to the ME7 hot seat in attempt to steer the ship away from danger. “I’m not promising the world to anybody but we have a good opportunity to beat Burton on Saturday. I wouldn’t say that if I didn’t think it.”
The former Gills playing legend and Gaffer answered the call from the Club and has quickly gone about his business since sensationally stepping back into the manager role this week. There is, however, little time to get settled in. On Saturday, Jimmy Floyd’s Hasselbainks’s Burton come to town, and Lovell would like nothing more than kicking off his own homecoming with a win.
Ahead of the crucial Sky Bet League One meeting, Lovell said: “It’s good to be back; I love this Football Club. It's a results game and all I want is success for the Club.
“The players have been brilliant since I’ve arrived. They are a good bunch who want to learn, listen and win games. We will give everything. I need 11 players out there who will run all day in a system I want to play.
“I’ll work hard for the Football Club and I think the fans will understand I’m Gillingham through and through and all I want is success. If I can instil that passion and enthusiasm into the players then I think the fans will respond to that, but we need people to be behind us all the way.”
The Welshman, who represented his country six times, is being assisted by midfielder Alex MacDonald, ruled out from playing for the rest of the season, and he has impressed in his new role already.
“Alex has been great,” said Lovell. “He knows everybody well. We can see all see the technical and tactical side of it, but he knows their personalities and he’s given me a lot of information. There are some good characters in this team and they have responded well to what we have done. The training has been excellent. It’s great to see smiles on their faces. The boys have been enjoying their time on the training ground but they have been putting in the hard work as well. As a player, I know what I would like, so I know what they would like.
“It will be interesting, from my point of view, to see how much the lads have learnt in training this week. The first thing you need to recognise is what kind of players you have got to fit into a system, rather than making a system and putting players into that.
“I’ve looked at the players we have got and what will suit us. The first step is getting the players to buy into the way I want to play and there has been a very positive response from that. On Saturday they need to put on a performance and show me they can play the way I would like them to play. Everyone will be up for it and the fans will be behind us. It will be a great occasion.”
Lovell, who represented the Gills as a player in over 200 games and found the net 104 times, knows the importance of having a roaring MEMS Priestfield Stadium crowd behind the team and that is what he wants on Saturday, but he admits it is down to his players to turn up the volume.
“The fans will be very important on Saturday,” he said. “They always are and they always have been. The last time I was here they were brilliant for me. We’ve got to make them make the noise. If we are performing on the field, making and creating chances and we have people throwing their bodies in front of the ball then the fans are going to respond. We can lift them, and then they can lift us. It is a mutual admiration between the fans and the players. Everybody needs to be together on Saturday. If we are performing on the field than the fans will love you. It’s a big game on Saturday; hopefully we will come out on top and it will be a day the players and fans can enjoy.
“It would mean a heck of a lot if we can get that victory against Burton. If we can get the three points, it will be fantastic. It would mean so much to me, so much to the Club and the people who support us.”