Published: 17:47, 15 June 2021
| Updated: 17:48, 15 June 2021
Max Ehmer has rejoined Gillingham just a year after leaving for Bristol Rovers.
The former Gills skipper is back following a difficult year at the Memorial Ground which ended in League 1 relegation.
Ehmer, 29, was publicly criticised, dropped and stripped of the captaincy by manager Joey Barton as the Pirates headed for the drop.
But the German defender, who made more than 250 appearances for Gillingham, is back where he’s loved and represents a great bit of business by Steve Evans.
Evans also hopes he will once again bring out the best in young Jack Tucker, with the pair forming an excellent partnership in the 2019/20 season, although there could still be another centre-half on the way.
“I’m absolutely delighted to have Max Ehmer back at the football club,” said Gills boss Evans.
“There is no secret that Jack Tucker’s outstanding performances alongside Max were a credit, but I hope to add another centre-back in the next number of days and create some competition.
“Max Ehmer is simply a top-class central defender in League 1. Simple.”
Ehmer, who was out of contract when he joined Bristol Rovers last summer, won’t be getting the captaincy back.
The armband is staying with Kyle Dempsey, with Stuart O’Keefe vice-captain, but Evans still expects Ehmer to be a big influence around the place.
“Kyle Dempsey will remain as skipper,” said the manager, “but I’m sure Max, with his experience and knowledge of everything around Priestfield, will be an outstanding help to young Kyle, alongside Stuart, who played a massive role last season too.”
Ehmer started his career at QPR, joining Gillingham on loan under Peter Taylor in 2014/15, and making the switch permanent at the end of that season.
He's the second new signing at Priestfield today, following the arrival of midfielder Ben Reeves.
Gills are well on course to bring in the "three or four signings" boss Evans is aiming for this week.