Lovell buoyant ahead of Burton trip
Lovell buoyant ahead of Burton trip

Steve Lovell was clearly still in a buoyant mood when he met the press this week after the FA Cup win against Cardiff City.

Of course “that” draw that takes Lovell and Gillingham to the manager’s home town of Swansea, before that though, Lovell will be turning his attention to what has become a crucial League contest away to Nigel Clough’s Burton Albion.

When the draw was made,” Lovell told KSN, “I was sat there with my wife and son Nick, and when Swansea came out first, I though “it cant be” and then number three came out! Im really pleased personally – I think it’s a good tie for us as a club as they’ve come down from the Premier League, there will be a good crowd, it’s a good pitch at a great stadium and I think that it’s a game where we’ll really have a go and you never know!

The manager then praised the Priestfield faithful who undoubtedly were the fabled “Twelfth Man” against the Premier League strugglers.

Lovell said, “It was great to see a good crowd at the game. I’ve always said that supporters of any club will only cheer if they’ve got something to cheer and we gave them a good shift in the first half to try and contain Cardiff and in the second half we took the game to them and changed it a little bit and had a go at them and that’s when Priestfield really got behind us.”

“When we attacked the Rainham End it really was something special and it was great for Listy to score the goal at that end and the winner was amazing and I hope they enjoyed it as much as we did.”

“There’s been a lot made about our home form, but I think it’s more about getting the results as a lot of the performances have been quite good and individual mistakes have cost us games.”

“I said to the boys in the week, it’s not the opposition who have caused us problems – it’s us! We cause our own problems and if we can nullify them, we’ll always create things to go and score goals and win games and that’s something I think we’ve shown against the Portsmouths and against Cardiff – when we do defend properly as a unit and don’t make mistakes, we go and win games.”

“This is something we’ve got to take into our League form now and not give teams goals – if a team are going to score goals they will be worthy of being goals as we cannot afford to keep giving them away.

It’s the performance itself and the confidence that the result will bring. There’s a spring in the step around the club and we know that we’re going to go to Burton who are a good side and have had a good season this year, but we’re on the front foot after the game last Saturday, all the boys realise what is needed to go up there and get a result.

That said you have to feel for Burton after what happened on Wednesday. Man City had a go and beat them well and you do feel sorry for the manager and players, but fair play to Burton as they kept going right to the very end and you could see that the spirit was still there.”

“So that’s what we expect anyway from a Nigel Clough team of rolling their sleeves up and digging in and Saturday will be no different from the beginning and it will be no different this week – they will have put that behind them and now concentrate on the League and if we allow them, theyre a good side.”

“So we’ve got to be on our metal, and all do exactly what they did last week and if we do that, we’ve got a chance.

Team news time and the manager said, “we’ll look at the side we’re playing against before confirming the team for the game to do a job. You might say to me that the eleven that did so well against Cardiff deserve another chance, but Ive got to think of the remaining nineteen, twenty League games coming up and Ive got to make a choice of where we’ve got to go and so without giving too much away, yes there could be changes come Saturday, but we’ll see.”

“Max Ehmer is back in contention, Barry Fuller is about a week or so to be in contention, Regan Charles-Cook is back to normal training and available, but Billy Bingham and Dean Parrett are still ten days or so away.”

In League One anyone can beat anyone – we’ve beaten Portsmouth; Burton beat Sunderland – it’s one of those games where anything can happen on Saturday and it will depend who turns up – whoever is the team who doesn’t make the mistakes will win the game.”

“Teams have got to earn their goals and points against us and that’s the difference in League One where teams make the mistakes which we must stop and now.”

“The two games before the Cup tie are now arguably the two most important games of the season as if we can win both of them, we could well go to Swansea in the middle of the table – if we do that we can go to Swansea and enjoy the day and really take it to them…”