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Gills capture the signing of striker John Akinde

Steve Evans has added powerful striker John Akinde to his forward options at MEMS Priestfield Stadium.

24 January 2020

Big news at MEMS Priestfield Stadium as striker John Akinde signs for Gills.

Gillingham have completed the signing of striker John Akinde from Lincoln City for an undisclosed fee.

The 30-year-old centre forward arrives at MEMS Priestfield Stadium after the players’ representatives had weeks of negotiations with Chairman Paul Scally and Chief Executive Tom Lawrence.

The striker reunites with Gills boss Steve Evans with the pair having worked together at Crawley Town in 2011/12.

To date, as a professional, Akinde has netted 154 goals in 453 appearances. He began his career in the academy at Gravesend & Northfleet, now Ebbsfleet United, and made his debut in 2006 before joining Championship club Bristol City in September of 2008 for a significant six figure sum.

Late on in the 2008-09 season the striker signed for League 2 Wycombe Wanderers and netted seven goals in 11 appearances before returning to Adams Park the following season.

In the summer of 2011, Steve Evans made his move for the big striker while at Crawley Town, and Akinde would go on to make 40 appearances for the club before moving to Dagenham.

A brief stint at Portsmouth was followed by a more prolific spell in non league at Alfreton Town, where Akinde made 43 appearances and scored 18 goals.

In the summer of 2014 the striker signed for Barnet where, over a period of four years, he scored an incredible 89 goals in 174 appearances.

On leaving Barnet, Akinde joined Lincoln City in the summer of 2018 and featured 81 times, scoring 25 goals. 

The former Pompey man is eligible for selection ahead of Saturday’s game against Rochdale at Spotland, although he is expected to start from the subs bench.

On capturing his man, Evans said: “ Give only credit to my Chairman Paul Scally and the big fella himself.

“My Boss has been terrier like, but outstanding, and got a player I wanted back in the summer, but he is here now.

“In fairness to John he has showed a real desire to play for me again and as a manager that is very humbling.

“His goals record needs no introduction, he makes us stronger as a group and he knows how hard he must work for the team.

“I have enormous respect for Michael Appleton, Jez George and those above at Lincoln City; we have spoken many times in the last two weeks but all of us have shown a maturity and a real level of professionalism to get this deal over the line.

“We need to conclude a couple of more deals and we will be ready to face the challenges in the second half of the season.”


A full interview with the club's new signing will be on iFollow in due course.

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