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Manager Neil Harris with an update on his search for new players at Gillingham

Gillingham manager Neil Harris is hoping his patience pays off in the transfer market.

Harris has players keen to join, deals that could be done imminently, but there are also some longer-term targets that could happen.

Manager Neil Harris wants four more in the door at Gillingham Picture: Barry Goodwin
Manager Neil Harris wants four more in the door at Gillingham Picture: Barry Goodwin

He’s on the lookout for four more additions, including a goalkeeper.

Harris said: “There are players available for us at the moment, but I am hesitant because I want the right ones and there are some we haven’t done yet that are available that we have chased all summer.

“I have personally chased them and now they might be available - or they are available - and it is a case of trying to get the deals done.

“While there is an opportunity of doing them I want to stick at them because I have been patient for 10 weeks. If I have to wait another week as long as we have a Plan B and a Plan C then we are in a good place.

“We have signed 11 and we still haven’t finished. It has been a tough period in trying to get through games as well, but I feel we are progressing as a group but certainly [we need] four more.

“We need to bring in another goalkeeper - we have just got young Jake [Turner] , who hasn’t played a lot of first-team football, finding his way - and three outfield players. That is not negotiable.

“We need to sign those players because we are light as a squad still.

“Alex MacDonald is still working his way to fitness. It was brilliant for him to get another 30 minutes [on Tuesday], we haven’t rushed him to 45 minutes yet.

“He is a long way from starting a game for us in league football.

“Ben Reeves has limited opportunities in his career to have a 40-game season, we have to be mindful to that.

“We have seen Shaun Williams’ quality, but we have to be mindful that he is in his 30s. That is why we have limited getting in the older players, unless we felt it was imperative because of their leadership qualities.”

Left-back Ryan Law is Harris’ latest addition, making his first appearance in the 3-2 defeat against Crystal Palace on Tuesday.

Harris wasn’t surprised it took the Plymouth loanee a little time to settle.

He said: “It took him 15-20 minutes to get going.

“We trained on the pitch on Monday, we were 30 minutes in the sun and for the first 12 minutes of that we walked through some shape with minders.

“Ryan has done nothing tactical-related, it was just getting to know the lads and I put him in because David Tutonda had a dead leg.

“I wasn’t necessarily thinking about putting Ryan in to face Crystal Palace on his home debut for 60 minutes, but that is the way the cookie crumbles sometimes in pre-season.

“For 15-20 minutes he looked a bit like he was getting going then after that he did well.”

Gillingham’s final pre-season game is against Southend on Saturday while a youth side head to Chatham tomorrow (Friday) night.

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