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Gillingham boss Steve Lovell praised the efforts of Tom Eaves in their win over Portsmouth

By Luke Cawdell

Gills' top scorer Tom Eaves was substituted at Portsmouth but boss Steve Lovell was keen to highlight his contribution.

Eaves failed to show for the second half after being replaced in attack by Conor Wilkinson.

Substitute Wilkinson equalised just minutes after coming on for Eaves but Lovell praised the man he replaced.

Gillingham striker Tom Eaves Picture: Ady Kerry
Gillingham striker Tom Eaves Picture: Ady Kerry

“We had a gameplan,” said Lovell. “First half, Tom Eaves battled really hard with the centre-halves and beat them up, basically.

“I spoke to Tom and Conor in the week about what could happen.

“Tom is not on his game at the moment, on the ball, but what he gives us is his energy and he had a big say in that win. He came off at half-time and he would be disappointed but he did what he had to do.

“I would have liked to see him do a bit better with the ball but he didn’t.

“Conor came on and he made a difference to us in the second half, there is no getting away from it.

“There is always a plan B. Tom has done great for us this year, that is why we started him. But any players are going to have a dip in form, with or without the ball.

“He is having a dip and he is disappointed but he will come again. He is a good lad, he has scored 14 goals this year.”

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