Published: 06:30, 25 April 2021
| Updated: 06:49, 25 April 2021
Steve Evans hopes to have positive discussions over his Gillingham future with chairman Paul Scally once the season is finished.
The manager agreed a three-year stint when he took over and during the past two seasons the club have been chasing a play-off spot. Evans is keen to continue the challenge of taking the Gills into the Championship but admits this season they have been short in some key areas. That’s proved costly at the business end of the season.
He said: “If we don’t get in the play-offs then we finish as best we can and then we can all have a few days in the early part of the summer when the campaign is finished, see where we are all heading, and if we are all heading in a direction that we want to be. We will all need to go and reflect and take that time, from the chairman, to me and to the players.
“We are close. People know me, I give it my life, but it is not about me, it is about where the football club want to go, that is the type of conversation we will have to have, where we are with players, where we are with us, where we are going to be able to add and build.
“We all need to reflect and see where we are heading but we need to heading in the right direction, that is why the meetings I will have with the chairman will be crucial to him and crucial to me and crucial to players of course, the ones we would like to take forward with us and the ones we will naturally lose, because there will be some that will move on and we will wish them well, but that period of reflection will happen once we’ve had a complete season.
“I think last Saturday (at Oxford) and this one, and a few other games since mid-January, we have been wanting in key areas a bit and that is the type of conversion I need to have with the chairman.
“I say this as honestly as I can, I am certainly not here for the wages, I am here because I thought I could take a football club to the Championship and we could have gone this year, that is the disappointing thing. I said to the players before kick off (on Saturday), make the play-offs and we will win them, we fear nobody in that top group, we are good against the top teams, statistics tell you that.”
It was a big challenge that Evans took on when he agreed to take over at Gillingham but they finished 10th last season and could finish higher this team. Progression is key for the manager.
“The Gills were never going to be fighting relegation when I took the job,” he said.
“I am a hundred million per cent in agreement with the chairman that this football club should never be at risk.
“The conversation will be around, are we going to make progressive steps? I am not here to go backwards.
“The one thing myself and the chairman have is a fantastic relationship, we will sit and pour a coffee and we will both be honest. I imagine my chairman will have gone home on Saturday, like me, as disappointed as we were last week, thinking, 'what if?' If we did our job like we did at Peterborough on Saturday and last Saturday then we would be bang in it with two games to go, but we didn’t. It is an individual thing but we can only remedy and address that in the summer.
“I will ask the chairman if we can put in place certain benchmarks. He will try and help us, he wants us to be in the Championship as much, if not more, than I do. We will have an open and frank discussion, it will be positive, but we have to have that discussion, I am not frightened to have that honesty, some manager would be frightened to do it, I am prepared to work hard and sit and meet him and see if we both want to go in the same direction and I am sure we will.”