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Gillingham manager Steve Evans wants win over Shrewsbury Town to keep play-off bid alive

Gillingham manager Steve Evans wants a reaction after standards slipped at the weekend.

The Gills returned from Rochdale with a point but Evans didn’t think his side were at their best.

Gillingham's Olly Lee holds off Jimmy Keohane at Rochdale on Saturday. Picture: Julian Hart
Gillingham's Olly Lee holds off Jimmy Keohane at Rochdale on Saturday. Picture: Julian Hart

They get a chance to put that right with a home game against Shrewsbury on Wednesday night.

“We were down a notch without a doubt,” said Evans, after his side were held 2-2 on their travels.

“We need to get it back up for Wednesday and if we can take four points out of six from the two games, we will be bang in the mix.”

Victory may well leave the Gills four points adrift of the play-off spots before a blank weekend.

The are without a game on Saturday as it’s the date they would have been playing Bury, the side who have been expelled by the EFL after being unable to prove their financial stability.

Gillingham head into their game against Shrewsbury unbeaten in nine League 1 games – but they have drawn their last four.

Evans commented: “I said to the players, draws get you nowhere, they keep you where you are.

“We should have won (at Rochdale), we should have won at Posh, we should have won a couple of other games that we have drawn, last week was fair against Oxford. Other than that we should be four or five points better off than we are.

“I said before the weekend that if we took six out of six from these two games it would be outstanding and if we took four it puts us in the mix.

“If we beat Shrewsbury on Wednesday, whatever happens on Tuesday, which we will watch with interest, we will be off for a free weekend three or four points off the play-offs, which would be remarkable.”

Midweek visitors Shrewsbury drew 2-2 with Liverpool in the FA Cup on Sunday evening, a match Evans was due to attend.

They then head to Priestfield in a game moved from the Tuesday to give the visitors an extra day to recover from their cup exploits.

“It’s a tough game,” Evans said. “We will have a look at them, we know them anyway, Sam (Ricketts) is a good manager, he has good players but we know the benefit of us winning. We would be 10th or 11th in the table, four points off the play-offs.

“Hopefully we will have a bouncing Priestfield and Rainham End on Wednesday. These two are massive games and I don’t use those words lightly.

“We have got a point on the road and it is always hard to get in League 1, whatever anyone says. We have an opportunity now to get three (against Shrewsbury) and for us to have a challenge of the play-offs.”

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