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Gillingham won’t let-up in play-off fight, says Stephen Clemence

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Stephen Clemence insists Gillingham will keep on fighting for a play-off spot following a comprehensive 3-0 win over promotion rivals Barrow at Priestfield Stadium.

George Ray’s first-half red card was key as the Gills ran out convincing winners, Josh Andrews opening the scoring in first-half stoppage time.

An own goal from Rory Feely and a late effort from Connor Mahoney wrapped up all three points for Gillingham, who now sit two points behind Crawley in seventh, albeit having played a game more.

Wins in each of their last two games may not be enough, but Clemence has vowed to keep going while the play-offs remain a mathematical possibility.

He said: “Obviously I am delighted with the three points first of all. I would have liked to have got more being greedy, but winning is the most important thing.

“We will keep fighting, we will go again next week.

“Although they went down to 10 men their shape did not change. They became more stubborn when they went down to 10.

“I changed us to a diamond and I am pleased with how we played then, we started to outnumber them and push our full-backs on.

“Josh Andrews will score goals at this football club, I have no doubt about that.

“He has been a real miss for me and I am really pleased to see him score on his home debut, he will take great confidence going forward.

“It has been hard for us to score goals, a lot of sides have tried to stop us here at Priestfield.”

The game’s key moment came in the 22nd minute. Seconds after coming on, Josh Walker was scythed down by Ray, who was duly sent off, while Walker required extensive treatment before being taken off on a stretcher.

From there, Gillingham took control, Andrews putting them in front when he sprung an offside trap and rounded Paul Farman three minutes into injury time at the end of the first half.

They made it two just before the hour mark, Feely diverting Conor Masterson’s ball from the right into his own net.

And 10 minutes later the points were sealed as Mahoney slotted home a third.

Barrow remain in the play-off places but have now lost three on the trot.

Manager Pete Wild said: “When our luck turns we just have to be ready to capitalise on it.

“We have had a great season, we have to keep believing that over the next 10 days something more will go our way.

“We were really pleased with how we started, how we set up, our plan and how we were going to go about our business, but then the red card changes the game.

“It is obviously a red card, it is not the greatest challenge in the world, he has mistimed it.

“George is not a bad guy, we know that, he is not that type of player.

“Unfortunately the timing of the second and third goals hurt us and then it was about protecting our goal difference and our players for Tuesday night.”

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