Published: 06:00, 23 February 2021
Kyle Dempsey was a wanted man last month and he’s thanked Gillingham boss Steve Evans for giving him the confidence to perform at his best.
The Gills fended off that interest during the January transfer window as clubs targeted a midfield player who is making goals and scoring them too after rekindling his best form.
Evans recently spoke of the player matching the performances he once displayed while playing in the Championship and the 25-year-old says the manager has been a big help.
“The fans can see that I have got all my confidence back,” said the Gills captain.
“One thing that has probably been playing on my mind over the last couple of seasons is not being that productive, goal-scoring midfielder, and to get that back, probably shows credit to the gaffer to give me that belief again.
“Every time I go into a game I feel like I am going to get a chance to score.
“I want to be the best player on the pitch with every game I go into, I want to get goals and I want to get assists. All I can focus on it trying to be the best and scoring and helping this team get three points.
“In recent games I have been putting the ball in the back of the net and the fans, on social media, they give me massive confidence too.
“I want to go out there and put in a performance for them because of how welcoming they have been. I hope that they can get in soon and I can do it live for them inside the stadium.”
Dempsey set up Akinde’s second against Bristol Rovers on Saturday and netted himself in the recent game against Charlton, scoring his sixth of the season with a great finish as he burst into the box.
His performances have helped keep the Gills in contention for the play-offs and now is a crucial period, with lots of games and lots of points up for grabs.
They take on lowly AFC Wimbledon tonight.
“As a team we know we are lacking that consistency,” he said.
“We need that consistency until the end of the season to give ourselves any chance of climbing up the table.
“With the squad of players we have got I think we can get up there. The key word is the consistency. Now as a team we have to put a run of wins together, seven or eight on the bounce, then the table starts turning. That is the main focus for us moving forward.
“As a group we are positive. We have a lot of confidence in the group. This is the chance of climbing up that table and getting as many wins as possible in the short space of time.”