Three trialists were also on show against Dartford

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Martin Allen is hoping there will be more joining his trio of new recruits who made their Gillingham debuts in the win over Dartford.

Striker Ben Strevens, goalkeeper Stuart Nelson, and midfielder Charlie Allen signed late on Friday afternoon, and played their part in the vitory over the Darts at the Princes Park Stadium.

Nelson was the only one to start the game but made way after 60 minutes as the whole team was changed around, as Strevens partnered Adam Birchall upfront, and Allen, the manager’s son, playing in midfield.

It was Strevens who got the only goal of the game on 73 minutes, tapping in Matt Fish’s header across goal from Birchall’s deep cross.

There were also three trialists in the side with non-league hot shot Damian Reeve partnering Danny Kedwell upfront, while Dean Morgan played on the left side of midfield, and Ryan Gilligan played the last 30 minutes in midfield.

Goalkeeper Tommy Forecast has also joined the club on a season-long loan as part of the deal which took Paulo Gazzaniga to Southampton.

Allen said: “Strevens did alright, he’s always going to do that stuff, he’s got form and quality, can play wide left wide right upfront on his own.

“Nelson, I know what he can do, and Charlie, he’s full of energy, full of running, played his part in the goal, he made the run from the six yard box, that’s what he can give you, he’s not a one paced average central midfield player,

“Sometimes people that are not on the radar we will find and help them and see what we can do.

“I’ll talk to the chairman, he’s on holiday at the moment but I’m in touch with him 45 times a day, but he’s ambitious.”

He said he is hoping to add to the three he has signed so far.

“I’ve been working on trying to get some players in,” he said. “There were a lot that left at the end of last season that need replacing, “We need to improve the gap between good young players and the first team, we are looking for a couple, it will be up to the chairman it’s his money.”

Charlie Lee wore the captain’s armband in the second half, while Danny Jackman did in the second, and Allen admitted he hadn’t made his mind up about who his skipper would be yet, and said picking Lee was done on the spur of the moment.

“We hadn’t picked a captain, and Chalrie was by the door,” he said. “There are still some more players to come in and hopefully they will have strong character and personality to help our team and will come into consideration for that job.”

He said he was half expecting the slow performance in the first half, but pleased with the turnaround in the second 45 minutes.

“The players looked very tired in the first half, they had a hard session on Friday, we perhaps expected it would be like that,” he said. “The 15 minutes after half time they really stepped up which I thought was encouraging.

“The last 30 minutes was with a less experienced team who did the same training as those yesterday, we played a different system and we were a lot sharper, a lot more tenacious and the fact we scored a goal was a double bonus.”



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