Pride in the Shirt

JASON Banton’s fourth goal in seven games was not enough for Argyle to grab a point at Gillingham, losing 2-1 at Priestfield to the league’s leading side.

Banton’s form, however, is a bright spark at a difficult time for the Pilgrims, and the ability of the winger borrowed from Crystal Palace is giving hope where hope is sorely needed. 

Jason, for his part, is not content with his scoring run. He wants his time at Home Park to be filled with points as well as goals, and takes pulling on the shirt very seriously. 

He said: “A lot of people might think ‘Oh, he’s only on loan, he’ll only care about himself’ but, when I pull on the shirt I play for Plymouth Argyle, Crystal Palace aren’t  on my mind right now. 

"Obviously they’re my club and I’m going back to them whatever happens, but at the moment I’m a Plymouth Argyle player. It hurts me as much as anyone else in the team.”

Argyle were two goals down to the Gills before Banton’s strike offered some optimism, but the quarter of an hour left on the referee’s watch was not enough. Jason offered some thoughts on the game and the weaknesses that continue to plague Argyle. 

“It was sloppiness from us again,” he said. “We didn’t get going in the first half. They kept it quite compact, but I felt if we’d have got a goal earlier than we did then we could have got at least a draw.

“We were always in it. Considering we are a team that’s almost bottom of the league and they are top of the league – you would not have thought they were top of the league. 

“You’ve got to approach it as ‘the world against us’, but we as 11 – or 18, and all of the staff – thought  we could get something out of the game. It’s 11 v 11 out there at the end of the day. But we conceded sloppy goals. 

“I’ve only been here a month. But I think that’s been the story of the season so far. We’re not conceding goals where you say ‘that’s a great goal’, we’ve conceded goals that could have been solved. 

“But I’m sure, if we carry on performing like we did in the second half, we’ve got to start picking up points.”