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Gillingham 2 Crawley Town 1: Reaction from Gills boss Steve Lovell

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Gillingham boss Steve Lovell had plenty to be pleased about after Tuesday’s Checkatrade Trophy win.

What was seen as a meaningless game in a maligned cup competition proved a worthwhile exercise for the Gills.

While several senior players got valuable minutes, some of his younger pros were also able to get a workout against a strong Crawley side.

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Bradley Stevenson takes the plaudits after scoring the winning goal Picture: Ady Kerry (5402314)
Bradley Stevenson takes the plaudits after scoring the winning goal Picture: Ady Kerry (5402314)

“It was a good test for us and a good challenge,” said the Gills manager, following the 2-1 win.

“They were much more experienced than our boys, there were a lot of players who have played a lot of games in that team, but our boys all enjoyed it.

“It was a proper game of football against a proper team and I thought we handed it very well and we handled the ball very well. We passed it well and created a lot of good opportunities from wide areas which was pleasing. It was a good positive evening.”

Lovell decided to make wholesale changes in the end, leaving out most of the players who played on Saturday.

The manager said: “It gave the boys coming back from injury some minutes, like Dean Parrett and Billy Bingham.

"Connor Ogilvie had a really good game, Bradley Garmston got 90 minutes and it is good for us, going forward now with a very important couple of weeks coming up with a lot of tough games and the FA Cup as well. It was important they got the minutes in and it bodes well now for the next couple of weeks.”

The Gills came from behind to win.

Lovell said: “We had most of the possession, first and second half, created quite a few half opportunities, with some good balls going into the box which we didn’t finish off and same again second half but it was nice to get two goals.

“The first one (scored by Elliott List) was a bit scrappy, but like I said in the week, we don’t get enough of them, those scrappy goals. Elliott was in there at the right time to finish it off and that was good for him.

"Bradley Stevenson got a good goal at the end. Overall we deserved to win and it was nice to win a game.”

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