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Stephen Clemence’s first win in the league as Gillingham head coach came at Priestfield against Salford City

Head coach Stephen Clemence admitted to a few pre-match nerves ahead of his first league game at Priestfield - which ended in a win.

Clemence is in his first job as the no.1 man after over a decade working as an assistant coach and was looking forward to taking charge of his first league game at Priestfield on Saturday.

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“I am not going to lie, I had a few butterflies coming into the game,” he said.

“You want to get your first league win as soon as possible. Everyone I spoke to who has managed or is still a manager said the same to me, they said the feeling never seems to change and I am starting to understand that a little bit more.

“You have a feeling where you know you have that responsibility on your shoulders and you want to do well for the football club.

“I want to do well for the owners, I want to to do well for the supporters and I want to do well for the players, I want to make my family proud, all those things.

“I probably felt those (same feelings) a long, long time ago when I was just starting out as a Premier League footballer. I wasn’t a nervous player once I started to get some experience.

“I probably had some nerve-racking games when I was involved with Steve (Bruce) in play-off games but you don’t get them all of the time but it just tells you that you want to do well doesn’t it ? When you get those feelings, is shows you are really hungry to do well.”

As a head coach, Clemence has more time to think pre-match.

He said: “Normally I am quite involved in warming the players up but I have been doing that for over a decade and now all of a sudden I am left in my office on my own and everyone tries to leave me alone, but I am preparing what I am going to say to the players and how I am going to get them going before the start of the game.”

In the week leading up to the game, Clemence revealed that he had spent time with his mum, remembering his dad Ray (the former England international goalkeeper) who died three years ago.

“I think about my dad every day,” he said. “Wednesday was three years since he died and I spent it with my mother, she still finds it very, very difficult. I spent the day with mum and that was nice.

“We still like to talk about my dad all the time, me and my sisters and mum and our surrounding families, the 10 grandchildren, we speak about my dad all the time and I think about him all the time.

“I would love him to have been here now. I know he would be extremely proud and I kind of know what we he would say if he was here.”

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