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Paul Scally believes new management team of Andy Hessenthaler and Mark Robson can provide winning formula

Gillingham chairman Paul Scally
Gillingham chairman Paul Scally

Gillingham chairman Paul Scally hopes he’s formed a winning combination with the appointment of Andy Hessenthaler and Mark Robson.

Hessenthaler has returned to the Gills to try and guide them straight back out of League 2 and he’ll be assisted by last season’s first team coach Robson.

The pair jetted out to Dubai on Thursday to meet Mr Scally and they had little trouble in convincing him and that they were the right men for the job.

Mr Scally (pictured right) said: "They are a very strong package, have very similar ideas and are very ambitious and passionate. They know exactly what is required.

"I felt that having a new voice as manager would be good and having Mark Robson as the number two would be a perfect combination. They were very happy with that decision and so I offered them the job there and then (on Friday)."

Vice-chairman Michael Anderson also jetted out for the discussions and Mr Scally revealed that they had already spoken to a handful of other applicants before deciding to offer Hessenthaler (pictured below) the job.

He said: "I had spoken to around five or six other people but I was quite keen to have Mark Robson involved. Mark said it would be quite good to have someone working with him and when I told him Hess was available then he said he was more than happy to work with him.

Gillingham manager Andy Hessenthaler
Gillingham manager Andy Hessenthaler

"I got the pair on a flight to Dubai on Thursday evening and I talked to them for about four or five hours on Friday.

"It was quite apparent that the pair shared the same ideas and that they could work together. I felt it was probably the best combination and if it wasn’t them then I could have gone for a completely new face.

"It was important to get it (the appointment) completed soon as I didn’t want it to drag on.

"There were a number of candidates who applied for the job last time, and will probably apply again next time, and so I could quite easily whittle that number down to six or seven very quickly.

"If I hadn’t have appointed Hess on Friday then I would have appointed someone else that day. The more we talked the more I felt comfortable about the situation and I’m pleased."

Robson (pictured below) worked under previous manager Mark Stimson but Mr Scally said he didn’t think that would be a problem.

"He is a very good coach and he has great respect from the players," said Mr Scally.

Mark Robson
Mark Robson

"He didn’t have too much input in team selection or tactics last season and had he done then maybe we wouldn’t have been relegated.

"I left him and Andy to talk on their own and I was hugely impressed with the way they wanted to take the club forward."

Hessenthaler managed the club between 2000 and 2004, amassed over 300 appearances as a player and is regarded as a living legend among fans.

"I’ve known Andy Hessenthaler for a long time and there isn’t more of an honest, committed, dedicated and fiery man than him," said the Gills chairman.

"He doesn’t need to sell himself to me – I know what I’m getting. He’s gone away and got some more experience and he’ll come back a better manager for it."

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