Published: 22:00, 16 January 2018
The better team won, admitted Gills coach Mark Patterson, after Tuesday night’s Kent Senior Cup quarter-final defeat.
A strong, but experimental Gills team, were beaten 2-1 by old foes Maidstone United at the Gallagher Stadium.
Scroll down for audio
Gillingham rested the players which started the league game against Rochdale on the Saturday, but handed the rest of their professionals a run-out, against Maidstone’s first team.
“I think the better team won,” said Patterson. “Nobody could complain about us being knocked out of the competition, we huffed and puffed a lot, but I think the better team won.
“We didn’t play particularly well but I don’t think it was through a lack of effort or commitment, I just don’t think we did as we could. Maidstone deserved their victory.”
There was no shortage of experience in the Gills line-up, with the likes of Conor Wilkinson, trialist Franck Moussa and defender Ben Nugent starting on Tuesday night.
But the Gills also gave Aaron Simpson, Greg Cundle and Darren Oldaker minutes on the pitch.
“It was a great experience for the younger ones,” Patterson said.
“They won’t have played infront of that many people very often, but when you lose you have to think, what could we have done differently?
“There are lots of bits we could pick up on and pull to shreds, but overall it was one of those nights for us, we didn’t start well, we got a head of steam just before half-time when we equalised and should have continued that in the second half but we didn’t.
“They scored with 20 to go and that was it.
“It was a decent game from a neutral, end to end, it was what you hope for in a Kent Senior Cup tie, both teams having a go, no silliness, no stupid tackles or things like that.
“We are disappointed to go out, we don’t like to lose any match, but good luck to Maidstone in the next round.”