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Oxford United 1 Gillingham 0: Reaction from Gills boss Steve Lovell

By Luke Cawdell

Gillingham boss Steve Lovell was frustrated to come away empty handed from Oxford.

Lovell felt his side were the better team but little went for them at the Kassam Stadium, losing the game 1-0.

“I thought we played well,” said the Gills boss.

Steve Lovell on the tochline Picture: Ady Kerry (5472343)
Steve Lovell on the tochline Picture: Ady Kerry (5472343)

“We were the better team over the 90 minutes, they were hanging on at the end and we lose to a very dubious penalty. It looked worse than it was at first and we had a very good goal disallowed first half from Regan Charles-Cook. He was never offside.

“We had our chances second half when we were on top and then we don’t take them, They go and get the penalty and that was it. We threw everything at them at the end and we don’t get anything.”

Lovell felt his keeper Tomas Holy has been harshly penalised, insisting that the Oxford man ran into his stopper.

Mark Byrne in action for Gillingham at Oxford Picture: Ady Kerry
Mark Byrne in action for Gillingham at Oxford Picture: Ady Kerry

“Tom hasn’t taken him out,” said the manager. “He has stood his ground and he has bought the penalty.”

Numerous other decisions went against the Gills, including a decision first half to rule Charles-Cook offside before he netted. Lovell believed it was “a perfectly good goal.”

In the end, the Gills were left chasing the game, after conceding the penalty on the hour. But Lovell didn’t feel the need to make any substitutions, leaving the same eleven on the field for the duration.

Gillingham striker Tom Eaves in action Picture: Ady Kerry (5472347)
Gillingham striker Tom Eaves in action Picture: Ady Kerry (5472347)

He said: “We were on top. There was no need to change something when it was going okay. We were creating chances and Regan was causing havoc out there.

“We had people that were causing them problems and we had no need to change it. They gave everything but just didn’t get the goal.

“We went to three at the back at the end, playing a 3-4-1-2 and pushed people forward. We just have to take our chances when the come. The only disappointing thing is that we are not taking them when they are coming.”

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