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Bromley manager Andy Woodman the current favourite to land Gillingham manager's job as Steve Lovell waits on news; Chairman Paul Scally has interviewed candidates

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Steve Lovell admitted on Saturday he has no idea if he’ll be needed next weekend as a new favourite emerges for the Gillingham manager's job.

Club chairman Paul Scally asked him to run the show last week following the departure of Steve Evans and he took charge of the game against Burton Albion.

Steve Lovell and Alex MacDonald were in caretaker charge on Saturday for Gillingham against Burton Albion. Picture: KPI
Steve Lovell and Alex MacDonald were in caretaker charge on Saturday for Gillingham against Burton Albion. Picture: KPI

Lovell was prepared to continue taking the team but is working day to day.

Mr Scally has been interviewing potential managers over the weekend and had already spoken to a few others prior to that. Lovell would love to be back permanently but despite Gills’ predicament - they are deep in relegation trouble - there seems to be no shortage of people who want the job.

“I might be gone Monday, I don't know,” Lovell said, when speaking after Saturday’s 3-1 loss to Burton.

“As long as the chairman wants me to be around I will help him and try and help the football club the best I can, which I always have done.

“I don't know what is going to happen. I just want to carry on and help around this place and if the chairman thinks someone else can come in and do a better job, then so be it, that is his decision.

“I don't know what is around the corner but I will be in on Monday, unless I get a call, and I will be working hard for Wigan next week.”

Bromley manager Andy Woodman Picture: Keith Gillard
Bromley manager Andy Woodman Picture: Keith Gillard

Former Bromley boss Neil Smith was the early favourite for the role but it’s the National League side’s current manager Andy Woodman who is now being tipped as the possible permanent replacement for departed Steve Evans.

Woodman is a former Arsenal goalkeeping coach who took over at Bromley from Smith. They are currently fighting for promotion in the National League. He has previously worked as a coach at West Ham, Newcastle and Crystal Palace, for much of that time under former team-mate Alan Pardew.

The bookies are pricing Woodman as short as 1/3 to be handed the job.

Back in November, Woodman was heavily linked with a vacancy at Hartlepool, forcing the Bromley chairman Robin Stanton-Gleaves into issuing a statement to dismiss the speculation.

Other names being mentioned, however, include Boreham Wood boss Luke Garrard, ex-Millwall manager Neil Harris, along with former QPR player Marc Bircham who has most recently managed League of Ireland side Waterford.

Whoever takes over will be straight into a relegation battle, which hasn't stopped the Gills chairman from being busy dealing with hopefuls. The time is also ticking on the January transfer window, however.

Lovell has been allowed to make changes to the squad and prior to the weekend he brought striker Charlie Kelman back to the club from QPR.

Gillingham’s 3-1 home defeat against Burton Albion leaves them eight points from safety - which might as well be nine as the teams above them outside the relegation zone have a far superior goal difference. The Gills have only won three games - and even bottom side Doncaster can better that.

Lovell would fancy his chances of guiding the club to safety, having done so previously back in October 2017, albeit that time he had more time to put things right and with less of a gap to overcome. He took over, initially as caretaker, with the club second to bottom in League 1. The Gills finished 17th that season, six points clear of the drop zone.

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