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11 June 2014

Gills new signing eager to hit the ground running after signing an initial two year contract at the club

Gills new signing Doug Loft says he cannot wait to get going after signing an initial two year contract at MEMS Priestfield Stadium.

The 27-year-old midfielder turned down a fresh offer with Port Vale and put pen to paper on Tuesday afternoon following a medical.

Loft, originally from Maidstone, revealed Manager Peter Taylor contacted him shortly after the season had ended and he is now delighted to have secured his future.

Speaking exclusively to the club’s official website he said: “I’m delighted really; it’s been going on a little bit but I’m happy to be here and I used to come and watch when I was younger with my family so I’ve always had a soft spot for Gillingham.

“When the season finished he [Peter] called my agent and they had a chat. I went away on holiday and had a good think about it and deep down I always knew Gills is where I wanted to be.

“The Manager, the staff and the Chairman sold it to me and we agreed on a vision for the club and where we want to go, I completely back them and they back me so they are the main reasons. Being close to my family is just an added bonus.”

With other offers on the table Loft revealed why he chose the Gills, he added:  “Because I see it as a club going somewhere, I did have offers but this is where I wanted to come.

"The club seems to be going in the right direction and when I came here with Vale in February Gillingham were one of the best teams we played.

Gills were 3-0 up, it finished 3-2 but I see there is a lot of potential in the team and there are some good lads here so I’m looking forward to getting started.”

Loft spent five years at Vale Park and was voted `Player of the Year` at the end of the 2011/12 season, and he admitted leaving the club was a difficult decision to make.

He said: “It was very tough because I was Club Captain, I’ve been there a while and I’ve played for the Manager for a long time and we understand each other.

“But this is a fresh start for me, I think I’ve done well for Vale but I felt like I needed a change and a new start – this is it.

“I can’t wait to get going – the off season is always good but you look forward to getting back and I can’t wait for the new challenge.

“Hopefully we’ll kick on and start well.”

You can see Doug’s exclusive interview in full on Gills Player.

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