Home   Medway   Sport   Article

Gillingham 3 Brighton & Hove Albion under-21s 2: Reaction from Gills assistant David Livermore after Papa John's Trophy win

Gillingham weren’t keen on a midweek EFL Trophy match prior to kick-off but it turned out to be quite a positive night.

Manager Neil Harris had questioned what it was all about, having to play in a cup tournament that few care for. Injuries meant he didn’t have much of a squad to choose from to play Brighton’s under-21s.

But assistant manager David Livermore admitted it was a decent night in the end, with striker Lewis Walker getting his first goals for the club, youngsters introduced off the bench and impressing and the Gills coming from behind to beat a Brighton team full of talented young professionals.

“We are delighted with the result,” said the Gills assistant. “Brighton have got some promising young players and we knew it would be tough.

"We had an idea of what minutes we wanted our players to play and it was a great opportunity to see some of our own youngsters on the pitch but also for lads that haven’t placed recently to get minutes under their belts.

“When you have a small squad and one or two injuries, you can look at the tournament and at times it can look like a hindrance but with five minutes to go, on the bench, we said actually in some ways it has been a positive, some of the young lads coming on, Lewis Walker getting a couple of goals, and coming from behind.

“We were disappointed with the goals we conceded but I think there were a lot of positives. One or two lads have put themselves into a position where I am sure they will come into the gaffer’s thoughts now.”

Walker thought he had completed a hat-trick on the night as he put the ball away from Wright’s corner but despite referee Sam Purkiss initially signalling a goal, his linesman had spotted a handball and the man in the middle changed his mind.

Livermore said: “I can’t see what was wrong with the third one if I am honest, I think the referee from eight yards had given it but we are told there was a handball in there somewhere that the linesman saw from some 30-40 yards away, it is a shame for him that he didn’t get his hat-trick.”

The Gills had Stuart O’Keefe, Olly Lee, Jordan Green and Ben Reeves all out injured and were desperate not to add any more bodies to the treatment room. When Shaun Williams went down with an ankle injury there were fears of another problem but he got back up.

“We don’t think it is anything major,” Livermore said. “He just rolled his ankle. He was only ever going to play 45 minutes.

“Shaun is 36 in a week or two and he is a crucial player for us, it is an area of the pitch where we have had a few injuries recently, we are low in numbers, it was always the plan (to substitute him) and it was good to get DJ (Dom Jefferies) on for 45 minutes and young Josh Chambers who I thought was excellent.”

Jefferies was back from an injury of his own and put himself about, making an impact off the bench. Chambers also got a first run-out following his return to the club, injecting extra impetus late on.

Livermore said: “Chambo hasn’t played many minutes and it was good to get him on the pitch, Joe (Gbode) as well at 17, to show what he is about, that was important, Elkan (Baggott) was back in after being away, there were plenty of positives, the main one is the result and coming from behind, which is always important.”

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More