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A month is a long time in football
A month is a long time in football

On the 23rd of December 2022, it was announced that American property tycoon Brad Galinson had acquired a majority shareholding in Gillingham Football Club. A month on from that eventful day, a lot has already changed on and off the pitch. 

The wave of optimism throughout the club is great to see after the last two years. An influx of players with real quality, improved performances, sold-out games, a clear vision for the future and frequent communication with fans; Brad just gets it, doesn’t he?

On the day the deal was completed, the fans were promised an ‘aggressive and successful’ transfer window by the Gills owner. Mr Galinson has definitely put his money where his mouth is, signing the likes of Tom Nichols, Timothée Dieng, Oliver Hawkins and George Lapslie for undisclosed fees.

The fact that opposition fans are now saying ‘he’s only gone to Gillingham for the money’ blows my mind!

Neil Harris has mentioned before that he wants to improve the youth structure at the football club, and the additions of Jayden Clarke and Ethan Coleman show that we are looking to upgrade that side of the club.

A B-team is something that we need as a modern-day football club. Brentford’s model is an excellent example with their B-team; recruit talent from the non-league pyramid and get them involved in the first-team set-up or sell them on.

Away from the pitch, the structure of the club was something that needed to be looked at. The appointments of Kenny Jackett as Director of Football and Andy Hessenthaler as Head of Recruitment were welcomed among the Gills fanbase. Both of them know English football very well, with successful playing and managerial careers.

Hessenthaler’s extensive knowledge of non-league will help discover more talent like Jayden Clarke, while Jackett has a lot of contacts in the game which could be a big pulling factor for the likes of Oil Hawkins and Ethan Coleman, who were both previously signed by the 61-year-old. 

I also love how Galinson hopes to grow the commercial side of the business, such as The Great Hall, The Factory and the GFC School, as that helps fund the team on the pitch. Brad has mentioned how the location of the club, with 75,000 businesses in the area, was a big reason why he decided to buy the Gills. 

The future is looking bright for Gillingham Football Club. It is clear to see the impact Brad and Shannon have already had. Hopefully, the team can comfortably avoid the drop zone, and with a little more investment in the summer, we can push for promotion back to League One next season.

As a fanbase, we aren’t asking to be the next Man City or to dominate European football; we just want a team that we can be proud of and that will compete for the fans.

Picture supplied by Gillingham Football Club.