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Team spirit got us through - Natalie
 Women's Football News 4 Nov 2011
 
Team spirit got us through - Natalie - 4 Nov 2011 - Women's Football NewsGillingham striker Natalie Crinean was full of praise for her team mates following her side's 2-1 victory over Southern Division leaders Brighton & Hove Albion. 
 
The Gills moved themselves to within four points of the leadership and Natalie told Women's Soccer Scene: "We worked so hard for the win. Brighton showed why they are top of the league in the first half but our team spirit and character got us through.
 
"We started the game well but conceded a sloppy goal and Brighton took control for the rest of the half. However some words of wisdom at half time from our manager did the trick and Danielle Carlton got us back on terms with her first goal. Danielle has one of the sweetest left foots you have ever seen and scored with a lovely strike from the edge of the area. I think she will get lots of goals like that in the future.
 
"We then went in front with a goal from Katie Hardaker and I was so pleased for her, because it was her first start in a while having waited her chance for a few weeks. She worked hard all game and thoroughly deserved it.
 
"Brighton came back at us but we defended for our lives, we never make things easy for ourselves! We had to defend four corners in the last five minutes, which wasn't easy against such a tall side, but we held out."
 
After coming to terms with the Premier League last season, Gillingham are handily placed in the Southern Division table and are well in the running for promotion in such a congested division. "This is probably our best run since winning promotion," admitted Natalie. "We didn't quite start as well as we would have liked but never lost hope as we aware of the players we have here.
 
"We still haven't reached our full potential but if we are picking up results like this, it still bodes well for us."
 
This week, Gillingham are again on their travels to play second placed Colchester United and, according to Natalie, they are relishing the challenge. "We are very confident," she insists. "We are doing better away from home, like a number of teams in our division.
 
"Unfortunately we shall be without our goalkeeper Sarah Quantrill who is on England duty, which is not ideal, but we just believe in the team we've got. Colchester are a good side but we prefer to concentrate on ourselves."
 
In the longer term, Gillingham are setting their sights on reaching a higher level and Natalie is convinced the club is ready. "Since winning promotion from the South East Combination, we have always been looking to try and go up again," she admits. "Last year we tried to run before we could walk but this time around we have worked more on the technical side of things. With the funding we have, we are able to play at National Division level and, although facilities have been limited, the girls are so committed.
 
"We are now training locally but up until recently, we have had to train at the London Soccer Academy. This has meant players travelling from as far as Ashford and Margate up to London but the girls were always prepared to do so and they deserve credit for this.
 
"In Danni Farmer we have an ideal captain who knows how to get the girls up for a game. She has done a brilliant job and is a great leader. Sarah Quantrill has been outstanding in goal and thoroughly deserves her first England call up. Emma Tune always does a good job in the centre of midfield and her work rate is phenomenal. which often goes unnoticed, and Deanna Cooper is a player who can't get enough recognition for me. She has played in every possible position for the club but is now the rock of the team in the centre of defence."

 
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