JUSTIN RAG­ING AS GILLS CHOKE

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Nick Bull

GILLING­HAM man­ager Justin Ed­in­burgh blasted ref­eree Nigel Miller as his 50th game in charge ended in a draw at Don­caster Rovers.

Two goals from Rory Don­nelly put the Gills in con­trol of the game, be­fore Rovers struck back through a dis­puted Cameron Ste­wart free-kick, awarded af­ter de­fender Max Eh­mer was ad­judged to have fouled Andy Wil­liams.

Striker Wil­liams equalised late on and should have won the game eight min­utes into stop­page time, as the vis­i­tors let a two-goal lead slip for the se­cond straight game.

“Peo­ple will look at us for los­ing a two-goal lead but like last week against Wi­gan, de­ci­sions have cost us,” said Ed­in­burgh.

“The per­son ref­er­ee­ing the game has al­lowed them back into it. It was never a free-kick that they score from and it gave them a lift.

“We’re suf­fer­ing from poor de­ci­sions right now.Yes, we’ve got to do bet­ter, we’ll get that ex­pe­ri­ence from th­ese sit­u­a­tions as you can’t teach peo­ple how to see games out in train­ing.

“But we were ab­so­lutely su­perb for long pe­ri­ods – it’s hard to take.”

Don­nelly opened the scor­ing for the Gills on nine min­utes with his third in as many games, as Ryan Jack­son’s deep cross reached the un­marked Ir­ish striker, who bril­liantly volleyed past Thorsten Stuck­mann.

The Gills’ high-press­ing sti­fled Rovers’ play and al­most led to a se­cond be­fore half time. Bradley Dack started an in­ci­sive break from mid­field then surged into the box to meet Bradley Garmston’s cross, but his header hit the bar.

How­ever, the vis­i­tors didn’t have long to wait to dou­ble their lead; Don­nelly coolly slot­ted past Stuck­mann two min­utes af­ter the break fol­low­ing Dack’s de­fence­s­plit­ting through ball.

Rovers failed to cre­ate any clear-cut op­por­tu­ni­ties be­fore the game’s key turn­ing point.With­out a man on the post, Ste­wart’s curl­ing 75th-minute free-kick eas­ily beat Gills goal­keeper Stu­art Nelson.

The game – which at one point was go­ing to kick-off 30 min­utes late be­cause of a power cut, be­fore even­tu­ally start­ing at 3pm – was de­layed by sev­eral min­utes fol­low­ing a nasty in­jury to Ste­wart who ap­peared to land on his head af­ter an in­nocu­ous tangle with Jer­maine McGlashan.

How­ever his side kept their nerve and Wil­liams slot­ted home an 88th-minute equaliser af­ter get­ting the bet­ter of Eh­mer, be­fore some­how shoot­ing over the bar with an eas­ier chance deep into time added on.

“You need qual­ity to get back in the game and Cameron scored a great goal,” said Rovers boss Dar­ren Fer­gu­son.

“At 2-1, I thought we’d go on and win it. It’s a dis­ap­point­ing re­sult. I don’t know how we’ve not won the game.

“We haven’t won three on the bounce in the league this sea­son. That was the chal­lenge to­day and un­for­tu­nately we can­not slip up too much if we want to be suc­cess­ful this sea­son. “If we want to get in the play-offs, we’re go­ing to have to be the best team in the league for 20 games.”

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