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Striker Adebayo Akinfenwa leaves Gillingham after rejecting an offer made by the League 1 club

By Luke Cawdell
Gills celebrate a goal in an exciting 3-2 win over Port Vale last season Picture: Barry Goodwin

Adebayo Akinfenwa has rejected the offer of extending his stay at Gillingham.

The striker was one of only a few out of contract player to be offered a new deal at the end of the season.

He scored 10 goals for the Gills and assisted many more to become a firm favourite with fans.

The big striker picked up the third place trophy in the supporters’ player-of-the-year awards at the end of the season.

Adebayo Akinfenwa in action during his first spell at Gillingham Picture: Andy Payton

Boss Peter Taylor said: “Sadly we have been unable to agree terms on a new deal and so Bayo will be leaving the club.

“I have the utmost respect for Bayo. He has been a superb ambassador for Gillingham and scored some very important goals for us last season.

“He has been a model professional, a great character to have around the place and I have very much enjoyed working with him.”

Akinfenwa was in his second spell at the Gills, having first joined in 2010, where he spent a season inbetween spells with Northampton Town. He made 46 appearances during the 2010/11 season, scoring 11 goals and striking up a deadly partnership with Cody McDonald.

Cody McDonald celebrates with Adebayo Akinfenwa Picture: Barry Goodwin

The pair were reunited again at the start of the 2013/14 campaign, although former boss Martin Allen at first opted not to play the two upfront together.

Taylor's arrival as manager saw Akinfenwa and McDonald partnered more often but the big striker was often rested, meaning he had to make do with playing only bit-parts in games. Nevertheless, he ended the season with 10 goals from 17 league starts.

He leaves with 83 appearances behind him for Gills and 21 goals.

Commenting on his departure, Akinfenwa said: "I enjoyed my time at Gillingham 100% and I haven’t got a bad word to say about the club."

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