Published: 06:00, 02 August 2021
Acceptable transfer offers have been made for Gillingham striker John Akinde but the player is holding out for a deal that’s right for him.
The 32-year-old has another year left on his Gills contract but is available for transfer. He was a starter on Saturday in the pre-season friendly at Leyton Orient as manager Steve Evans had a good look at his squad players.
Akinde was a target for Southend United last season and they may want to revisit contract talks for a player who should be a threat in the National League following their relegation. Since moving to the Gills in January 2020 he’s scored eight league goals in 53 appearances, with half of those off the bench.
The striker would get minutes for the Gills in League 1 at present as they are light in the attacking area but Vadaine Oliver remains first choice of the two big forwards.
Evans was asked what the latest was with the 32-year-old during Saturday’s post-match interview.
He said: “We have had clubs come in for John and accepted in principle to do things but John has turned around and said it is not right for him. The final thing is always down to the player providing the two clubs are happy.
“We have been happy on a couple of occasions but he has decided to stay on.
"But one thing we couldn’t do is start the season with just Vadaine Oliver as a recognised striker and young Gerald (Sithole) as well. It is fairly obvious where we are looking, as well as others, we are probably looking at three players.”
Gillingham kick off their League 1 campaign at home to Lincoln City on Saturday and are set to complete their pre-season campaign at Norwich tomorrow (Tuesday).
Evans has said he wants any new players in by Wednesday or he will be focussing on what he’s got ahead of that game against The Imps.