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Gillingham manager Steve Evans wants the season to be completed with promotion and relegation issues decided

The football authorities have assured fans this season will be completed – and that’s music to the ears of the Gills boss.

A statement last week by the FA said that the season would be extended indefinitely, so that clubs can finish what they began.

Gillingham manager Steve Evans
Gillingham manager Steve Evans

It means that Gillingham will be free to continue their challenge for a League 1 play-off spot.

Manager Steve Evans said: “We have nine games left and it won’t be the first time in a season we have to consider playing two or three games in a week. You have to do what you need to do.

“I think in fairness to teams that were absolutely flying, and have spent lots of lots of money, you want to see them getting rewarded and ultimately if you have not invested, or you have and it’s gone wrong and you are at the bottom end, then for the sake of the competition, if you go down you go down, simple as that.

“I want it finished. I want to identify with the progress that we have made.

“That isn’t just with the league table, everyone knows we have made enormous progress and if we fall short of the play-offs we want to know how far we fall from it and what we need to do next season, that is the plan.”

The current football lockdown runs until the end of April but that could be extended again.

Football bosses will then need to consider a number of issues, including player contracts, most of which expire on June 30. Loan players will also be on deals agreed financially for a set period.

There is a determination from most to finish the season, however, and none of those issues are likely to be a stumbling block.

Evans said: “We’re fighting a dreadful disease, let us first and foremost get through that and with as many of us still on this planet as possible and then we’ll get back to work.

“There isn’t one player who won’t want to play football and get the season finished.

“Let’s get the fixtures out of the way and let’s applaud those teams who have got prizes to be won and commiserate with the others, but that is the sporting side of it and then we get ready for next season. It will probably be a slightly later start, but that might not be a bad thing either.”

The Gills are due for a second week without training at the club and Evans admits there may have to be a mini pre-season before they can resume. Match fitness will have taken a hit.

“We will need a two-week build-up programme,” he said.

“I could see us playing football in mid-May and ideally we have a great prize to play for. Those that were perhaps flying might not be flying when we come back and those that weren’t doing so good could suddenly turn it around. That is the nature of football.”


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