Published: 00:00, 08 February 2019
Gillingham showed high-flying Barnsley too much respect last time they met and boss Steve Lovell is keen they don’t repeat that mistake on Saturday.
The Tykes are unbeaten in 10 games and moved up to second in League 1 last weekend with a 2-0 victory over Scunthorpe.
The Gills lost 2-1 to Barnsley when they met in Yorkshire earlier in the season, conceding twice in a tough first half.
“We gave them too much respect in the first half,” said Lovell.
“It is something we are conscious of and we can’t do that here (at Priestfield).
“We have got to be in their faces, we have to take the game to them, pressurise them and hopefully create a few chances early on.
“They have got good players, but so do we. The big thing we have to do is respect ourselves, give ourselves a little more credit for what we are doing. We can do it.
“The big thing for our players is not going out there and thinking that you are second best.
“That is something perhaps in a few games we have done and you can’t do it.
“Everyone has to be as one, to go out and have confidence in ourselves, which I think most of the boys have, but it needs to be everyone.
“Everyone needs to be focused on being positive from the first whistle and if we do it, if we can create a few chances and perhaps get a goal early on, it will raise everyone. It is something we have to push for.”
Lovell admitted he had “a few choice words” to say during the break in that earlier game against Barnsley but never got the bill for a bin he broke in the changing room.
He said: “As a manager you do get frustrated because there is no reason to give them that much respect, they have to respect themselves and realise they are good players.
“When we have done that in games we have done really well.
“There is no doubting the confidence of the boys, it is just certain individuals, not everyone.
“They have to take the bull by the horns and say ‘this is it’. Sometimes certain individuals don’t do it and it lets everyone else down.
“It will be a tough game, they are second in the league, they are a form side and a good side, but so are we.
“There is no reason we can’t get a result on Saturday.”
More by this authorLuke Cawdell