Gills Manager proud of squad effort...
Gills Manager Martin Allen believes his squad have the capability to `put their foot down` and exert their authority on the league table by picking up another three points against Port Vale on Saturday.
Martin feels his team have yet to peak but has been proud of the efforts they have given up to this point, and is equally delighted at the support the team have been receiving.
He said: “I’m very proud of all the players and their drive and determination to better themselves as players. We have moved into the second lane of the motorway and I think we are ready to get in the third lane and put our foot down.
“I still don’t think we have peaked yet to be honest.
I was very proud with the way they all worked together. The support has been well documented and the atmosphere was magic, it was a special occasion but there was another special one at Bristol City and against Bradford.
“Chesterfield at home was a good point; the 4-0 win over Bristol Rovers was high up there. Dagenham away, can you remember all of our supporters giving a standing ovation having won again?
“Wycombe away when we got the winning goal in front of our supporters – that was special too.
“I do feel a responsibility for the supporters as they do put a major contribution towards our wages. They work hard, pay their money and they want to get something out of it.
“I asked the Chairman for a good squad of players and when you get that you have to play them. They have been superb and all of the boys that come in on Saturday have all played in winning teams.”
Martin touched on the performance which earned the Gills three points against Southend on Tuesday night, and explained his decision to play Andy Frampton in a deep midfield role in the second half.
He said: “They were getting crosses in from the wide areas; we had to try and stop them. We were not going to put a forward there so it was quite obvious. He’s also good in the air, whenever they were going down the left we asked Frammo to go back into the middle by the penalty spot to get the ball away from our box.
“He did a good job and he did that for me at Brentford so it was a no brainer.”
Martin went on to discuss how much potential Gillingham had and where he could take them in the long term, but was quick to stress that no team, however big they are, have no divine right to play in higher leagues.
He said: “I don’t buy into that, it used to make me smile when all of those `big` clubs were in the first division with the big stadiums and all of the history and they said they don’t deserve to be there. They do because that’s where the team has played; they haven’t won enough football matches so you drop down.
“It’s not about your history or how big your stadium is; it’s about how you run your club and how you bring through your players and if you do that well enough the fan base will grow. This club deserves to be in division two because that’s where it is.
“There is no god given right or a free path to play higher because you have to earn that and you have to earn it currently and not from your history.
“There is potential for the club to go higher – I know division one like the back of my hand and I know every player there and in the Championship.
“It’s definitely there for the Championship let’s be honest, but let’s get this job done first. Let’s not get carried away, there is a long way to go.”
Although the season is in the opening stages Martin shrugged off any rumours or discussions which may arise in the future linking him to other clubs, and is very much focussed on achieving success at MEMS Priestfield.
He said: “I made a promise to the Chairman – I told him we would do really well when I met him and he just grinned and said `What will you do when speculation grows about going to the Championship because they will want you? `
“I promised him, shook his hand, went eye to eye and said `Mr. Scally I will stay here, I have gone for the money in the past and this time I will stay and see it through…unless it’s Premier League,` and he laughed.”