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Gillingham's new assistant manager John Schofield enjoying life in the fast lane at Priestfield

By Luke Cawdell

Gillingham assistant manager John Schofield admits the move to Priestfield was a life changing moment.

Schofield joined the Gills alongside new boss Martin Allen and has barely had time to think since a hasty move to the south.

"It all came about pretty quickly," said the former Lincoln City midfielder.

"The gaffer (Allen) spoke to me about coming down and I said yes, I’ll come down for a chat and see what happens. I got up at 3am (on the day Martin was appointed) and drove down for a 6am meeting where we put together some ideas.

"We met the chairman at half 10 and discussed one or two bits with him about how as a group we were taking it forward. I met the players at 2.30pm and since then it’s been full steam ahead.

"That’s football for you, your phone rings and it can change your life, for better or for worse.

"You are only ever one phone call away from your life changing and usually the changes are from one extreme to another.

"The phone call like the one I got off the gaffer was one of the best ones."

Schofield played his football in the lower leagues, appearing for Doncaster, Hull and Mansfield before a second spell at Lincoln. He made the transition into coaching and has twice worked with Allen before, as assistant at Cheltenham and coach at Notts County.

He has also had a stint as manager at Lincoln and brief spells in caretaker charge of Walsall and Cheltenham.

Working alongside Allen again is something Schofield – a UEFA A qualified coach – is excited about.

"I know how the gaffer works and he knows how I work," said the 47-year-old, who was linked with the manager’s job at Boston United before heading to the Gills.

"My job is to try and drip-feed in the things that we want into them early on in the week and then when the gaffer steps in to do the nuts and bolts they know where we are coming from.

"I’ll oversee the coaching on a day-to-day basis, monitor fitness levels and all that type of thing. My job is to make sure that the gaffer can concentrate on his core responsibilities rather than worrying about other things.

"We are ready; we’ve got a plan and the job is to try and improve on what’s happened at the club previously."

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