Gills Manager happy with way things are going..
Martin Allen says he is happy with the way things are going at the club, but conceded his players were slightly disappointed not to have come away with three points against Chesterfield on Saturday.
The Gills drew 1-1 at MEMS Priestfield at the weekend with Danny Kedwell cancelling out Craig Westcarr’s opener in the 13th minute, and despite having chances to win the game the home side were unable to grab the winner.
The result means Gillingham are top of npower League Two, and although the manager didn’t want to dwell on it too much, he said everyone at the club should be pleased.
He said: “We are top of the league, there is no need for celebration but after five games our club has done really well and we should be pleased with what we have all done. Including the supporters who tried to get behind the team.
“They could see it didn’t quite click into place and we were perhaps not as fluid with our passing and there were edgy moments but they stayed with the team – they could see the effort and they recognised the effort.”
Martin praised the visitors for their efforts and predicts they will be challenging for promotion at the end of the season.
He said: “They had a fantastic run at the end of last season and they nearly stayed up – it’s virtually the same team with a new centre forward and they also won the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and they beat Swindon so they have a decent group of players.
“Without a shadow of a doubt Chesterfield will be up there within the top seven come the end of the season. They have decent professionals, good players, a good stadium and good fans.”
Regarding his own team’s performance Martin said the players are capable of playing better but there is plenty of material to work with and improve on.
He said: “We have played a lot of games in a short space of time of high intensity and its tiring so I’m happy overall with what is happening, but there is work to be done to evolve and develop us in to a much better team.
“We were disappointed to concede the goal but I would never ever criticise any individual unless he does something stupid. We will work in house, look at DVD’s and look at the areas and explain to the players.
“They don’t choose to do something wrong with intent so we will help them, try and learn from it and move forward.”
Martin commented on Adam Birchall making his league debut for the club having missed the whole of last season with a serious knee injury, and says the management will work closely with him to aid his progression.
He said: “How special is that? I called him into my office at 1.20 on Saturday and I said to him `you’re a sub` and his teeth just shone because he was so happy.
“He’s got his career back on track and we will now work with him slowly to keep developing him. I’m not sure he’s ready to start games yet but that will come in time.”
The manager also spoke of the deal that saw Connor Essam join Luton Town on a one-month loan deal on Friday, and Martin explained his reasonings behind the decision.
He said: “We thought he needed to go out and play some games. He has been on a tough programme of development of speed, strength and power. He has been fantastic in the work he has put in and we thought now was the right time for him to play at a competitive level.
“Luton is a tough club and it’s a tough level – with the emergence of Callum Davies, Tom Flanagan Andy Frampton and Adam Barrett we thought it would be a good idea and it’s a good chance for him.”
Finally Martin looked ahead to the JPT tie against Crawley on Tuesday, and said there will be a few more changes made for the game.
He said: “There will be changes – we knew about having eight games in 25 days so they come thick and fast. In time there will be a more settled 11 but everyone is now vying for the shirt – they are a good group of lads.”