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Gillingham Supporters’ Club issue statement after incidents in recent games against Notts County and Newport

The Gillingham Supporters’ Club have praised the club’s actions in their efforts to eradicate the “mindless few” who are spoiling it for the rest.

One spectator was arrested during Saturday’s game against Newport on suspicion of a racially-aggravated public order offence - which has led to an FA investigation - while three others were ejected for discriminatory chanting.

A Gillingham fan was arrested at Priestfield on Saturday and three others ejected
A Gillingham fan was arrested at Priestfield on Saturday and three others ejected

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The club have been working hard to make Priestfield a venue free from hatred but last week the Notts County goalkeeper was hit by an object thrown by a spectator in the home end and Saturday’s game was again marred by actions of just a few.

There were reports that the visiting female physio had also been the victim of abuse.

The supporters’ club released a statement, which said: “We recognise the hard work and time that is being put into our club by the owners and the club’s staff and are appalled by the behaviour of some individuals at Priestfield this season and in particular the last two home games.

“The vast majority of Gills’ fans are ordinary people who just want to support their team and enjoy the day – many with young children - and the action of the mindless few must be eradicated.

“We will continue to offer the club our full support.”

Chairman Brad Galinson told fans the club “will not stand for it.”

Writing on social media, he said: “Nearly all Gills fans are good people just there to enjoy the day. One was not & will never be welcome at Priestfield again.

“Three others ejected for sexist/homophobic chants. They will either learn how to behave or not return. We will not stand for it! Help us help you.”

Former player Carl Asaba replied. “I was speaking with Ade Akinbiyi, both of us were really gutted with the video of a person inside Priestfield treating a visitor in such a way.

“That the ownership has acted so swiftly and openly is brilliant.”

Gills fan David Miller wrote: “Great that action is taken but is sexist and homophobic abuse treated less seriously than racism? Surely prejudice in all forms should be met with zero tolerance?”

Daniel Hewitt added: “Don’t give them an option to return! People like that don’t change.”

Another fan Rachael Lemanski-Lewis wrote: “This just simply isn't our club, we are a family club in all my years supporting the Gills I've felt safe but that's quickly changing.

“Even the family end is becoming subjected to men who feel it appropriate to demonstrate abusive behaviour, heartbreaking for the next generation.”

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