Gillingham clinched their first home league success of 2019 on Saturday with a 1-0 victory over resurgent Scunthorpe United and in the process lifted themselves out of the League One relegation places.
Midfielder Mark Byrne fired the Gills in front with a neat first-half strike which was enough to end a winless run of four league games at Priestfield for the Gills. The result and performance were in stark contrast to last weeks heavy home defeat to second-placed Barnsley and lifted the mood at the Kent club, something manager Steve Lovell recognised when speaking after the match.
He told the club’s website he was proud of his team who will now go into Tuesday nights match at promotion-chasing Sunderland with renewed confidence “I felt really proud of them today because it hasn’t been easy the past few weeks.”
“There will be a buzz around the place. We’re really looking forward to Sunderland which will be a different mental approach now we’ve got this behind us.
After the visit to Sunderland, the Gills face further trips to Wycombe and Fleetwood in a tough run of away fixtures that could well define their season, but Lovell was bullish after beating a Scunthorpe side who had only lost once since Christmas.
“We go there in a different frame of mind, and it’s important that we push on. We want to get to 50 points as quickly as possible and if we battle like that, then we soon will.”
A massive win for the Gills over an improving and dangerous Scunthorpe United. Another home defeat and they would have been in serious trouble.
They have a tough run of away fixtures but if they can pick up a couple of points on the road they should stay out of the bottom four.
It’s going to be a battle, but I believe they have just enough to stay up this season.