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31 January 2014

New signing Gary Borrowdale excited by the challenge that lays ahead at Priestfield

Gills new signing Gary Borrowdale says he hopes to take his opportunity at MEMS Priestfield Stadium with both hands as he looks to kick start his career in professional football.

Gary, who has been applying his trade in non-league recently to improve his fitness, has played under Peter Taylor before while at Crystal Palace and is grateful the Manager has given him the chance to prove himself once again at this level.

Speaking exclusively to the club’s official website he said:

“I rang him a couple of weeks ago because I live local just on the off chance if I could come in, train and improve my fitness.

"I’ve been playing non-league games just to build it up but training every day makes a massive difference so he said come in, train and we will have a look and if something can be done then it can be done.

“If not it was literally still train and take it day by day.

“I’m 28 so I’ve still got a few years ahead of me where, if I get my fitness up, which they are doing here which is great for me. Hopefully I can be an asset when I’m fit and prove I can still play at this level.

“I’m a left back but I can fill in at centre back if needed or in midfield."

Peter said in his interview yesterday that it could take up to three weeks for Gary to regain full fitness, although the player himself is hoping he can get up to speed a lot quicker and make the most of his experience.

He added: “I’m a lot fitter than I have been but games are a completely different situation so if the Manager says I need that much hard graft at the training ground and other stuff then fine.

“If it’s before that then great, but that is the time line he has put on it.

“When you’re on the pitch you just play your own game but I’ve played a lot of games at mainly Championship and League One level but every game is a different circumstance so you use the experience as best you can but you take things game by game.”

Borrowdale has signed a contract until the end of the season, but isn’t looking too far ahead as he is focused on improving in the short term.

He said: “It’s an opportunity to get back in full time and if I get my fitness back up then you never know. It’s until the end of the season which is great for me and it gives me that platform to push on.

“Things could be extended, things could not work out – Football is a cut throat business at the end of the day and I’ve known that form my time out. I’m not thinking too far ahead.”

Gary said he believes he has played his best Football under Taylor while at a previous club and talked through his time with the England youth sides.

He added: “I think he’s a good Manager, I was probably plating the best Football of my career under him at Palace – maybe I left too early when my contract finished but you look back on the past and maybe see different things but I have nothing but good things to say about him as a coach or Manager.

“He gave me a chance at Palace and called me up to the U21’s too.

“The U15’s included Wayne Rooney and we went to the European Championships – the U21’s were Theo Walcott, Wayne Routledge, Leighton Baines was in front of me as the other left back so they have all gone on.

“I’m back to starting again and hoping to push on.”

You can watch Gary’s exclusive interview on Gills Player.

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