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Gillingham chairman Paul Scally faced criticism at the weekend but kind words from his manager Neil Harris

Gillingham manager Neil Harris defended club chairman Paul Scally amid renewed calls from some for him to quit after Saturday’s relegation.

A plane pulling an anti-Scally banner flew over Priestfield before their crucial match against Rotherham, which the visitors won 2-0, ending Gillingham’s nine-year spell in League 1.

Neil Harris and Paul Scally sit watching the recent game at Portsmouth. Picture: KPI
Neil Harris and Paul Scally sit watching the recent game at Portsmouth. Picture: KPI

There were calls from fans at the end for Scally to go but Harris believes the club is in safe hands.

“The chairman is a really good bloke,” said Harris after the Rotherham game.

“He’s a really good man and he has put a lot of money into this football club over the last 25 years. He will continue to do that next year.

"It is fine people saying ‘we want Paul to leave’ and stuff and someone else to come in but there has to be people willing to come in and support Paul, if not he will just run the football club the best way that he can.

“He won’t threaten the football club, he won’t take huge debt, I support him on that, I don’t want the club to take huge debt.

“If I didn’t care about the club I would do what other managers do, I would get an investor to borrow loads of millions then leave and see it all go pear-shaped. I am not prepared to do that.

“The chairman wants to support, he is a really good bloke, he is a Gillingham fan.

"We have to find a plan over the coming weeks to recruit the right characters, the right players and just drive the standards of the whole football club to a better level than they are now.”

In his recent report to fans, Mr Scally said: “I will continue to run this club to the best of my ability, whether that is enough in the long-term only time will tell.

“Walking away is not an option for me given I carry the burden of responsibility for many, and even if I did want to walk away, (which I could not be faulted for doing of late), the effect on the club would be devastating for everyone.”

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