Published: 21:00, 04 May 2019
| Updated: 15:03, 05 May 2019
Caretaker boss Mark Patterson was delighted to have given the loyal fans a reason to be cheerful.
It’s been another tough season for the Gills in League 1, but with safety already assured, they enjoyed themselves at the seaside on Saturday.
Three first-half goals put the Gills well in control of their final game of the season and they held out in the second half to claim a win, leaving them sitting 13th in the table.
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“First half we played well and were deservedly three up,” said Patterson, who had been put in charge of the last two games following Steve Lovell’s sacking.
“Had the half-time whistle not come when it did then we may have added to that.
“We rode our luck second half, there were a couple off the line, but a lot of it was good defending as well and we soaked up the pressure.
“We got away with one or two things but I was really pleased with the effort and application because we did want a result for the fans and we got it, so that was very pleasing.
“We have been to Hartlepool, Fleetwood, Plymouth, all over the country (this season) and we have always had fans follow us. I know every club says the same thing about fans but our fans do do a lot of mileage and they are always there.
“Days like (Saturday) are good for them because they remember it, it’s the last game of the season and a 3-0 win in Blackpool, I think they enjoyed it as much as we did.”
The Gills may have been safe before the weekend game but with the managerial position vacant, there was plenty for the players to play for.
“People remember your last game,” said caretaker boss Patterson.
“I said to them ‘the new manager might be sitting in the stand and if you put a shift in and have a go then that might be the first thing he remembers about you’. That was something we tried to get across to them.
“It has been a long season, also, we knew that we could finish 13th with a win and that’s happened which is great for us, to finish mid-table.
“I just said to them, go and show what you can do, play and enjoy yourself and that’s what they did.
“A little bit of pressure was off because we weren’t fighting for points to stay up. We dominated (first half) and did really well, like we have done a few times this season, then we had to dig during the second half to secure the three points and a clean sheet, which was really pleasing.”
More by this authorLuke Cawdell