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Gillingham striker Conor Wilkinson off the mark in friendly draw at Dover Athletic

By Luke Cawdell

Gillingham coach Steve Lovell was pleased to see striker Conor Wilkinson show what a finisher he can be.

Wilkinson had a penalty kick saved midway through the first half of the friendly match against Dover, but he struck five minutes later from open play, pouncing in the box to level the scores.

Conor Wilkinson scores for Gillingham Picture Gary Browne

Conor Wilkinson scores for Gillingham Picture: Gary Browne

“Conor is a very good finisher,” said Lovell, who scored over 100 goals for the Gills during his playing days.

“He is a very confident player and very good on the ball.

“He brings us a nice dimension as a centre forward and disappointed as he would be with the penalty, which was a good save, it was nice that he got a chance straight afterwards to score.

“He is a good finisher, he works the line well and he had a good workout.”

Conor Wilkinson in action for Gillingham at Dover Picture Gary Browne

Conor Wilkinson in action for Gillingham at Dover Picture: Gary Browne

Wilkinson joined the Gills following his exit from Bolton but he wasn’t the only newcomer to net, with former Southend man Luke O’Neill on target in the second half.

“It was a good header,” said the Gills coach.

Report: Dover Athletic 2 Gillingham 2

“He has been a great signing for us and he scored a good goal, he is a good professional and he worked hard. It was a good ball in and a good header.”

It was Gills’ third friendly of the summer, having beaten Faversham an Dartford in their opening two games.

Lovell said: “We have now given the lads 90 minutes with this one and Dartford so it’s another progression towards the start of the season and we’ll build on that for next week.

Steve Lovell with Gills head coach Ady Pennock at Dover Picture Gary Browne

Steve Lovell with Gills head coach Ady Pennock at Dover Picture: Gary Browne


“We’re going in the right direction.

“They are fit. Neil (Withington) our fitness coach has worked very hard with them, with the ball and without, the week in Northern Ireland was brilliant, that really got them off to a good start and now the games are coming along and the important thing is getting them match time, ready for the start of the season.

“We are in the position now to push forward and we are now where we want to be with three weeks to go before the start of the season.”

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