The race for the hotseat (aka poisoned chalice)

It’s a time for idle speculation, as at least 30 candidates are reported to be interested in the Gills job (reputedly including Wolfie amongst their number – or didn’t he make the short list?) we thought we would join in.


Micky Adams – Gills old boy and has a decent record in lower-division football. Could be a safe pair of hands, if he could be lured from a cosy job at Colchester. Odds 7-1

Martin Allen – Reported to be top of Scally’s list, but the chairman doesn’t have a track record of picking independent thinkers. “Mad Dog” would be good for team spirit although for how long? Has a history of jumping up the career ladder. Odds 3-1

Dave Bassett – Is he still alive? Odds 10-1

Liam Daish – Excuse me?! Long-ball merchant, hasn’t even been particularly impressive at Gravesend. Odds 5-1

Mick Docherty – Very moderate record at Rochdale and largely forgotten in his role as Jepson’s assistant. Probably behind Onuora in the queue, for starters. Odds 4-1

Joe Dunne – Gills legend as a player and is highly regarded at Colchester. Would be a popular but very risky appointment. Odds 20-1

John Gorman – Another ex-Gill, who never got the chance to show his abilities (or otherwise) at Priestfield. Has a good pedigree and may have better contacts than some others. It’s not clear that he wants to get back into management though. Odds 15-1

Andy Hessenthaler – The not-quite-impoverished-man’s Ronnie Jepson and in any case has ruled himself out. Odds 50-1

Mike Newell – Always good for a quote and would undoubtedly raise the club’s profile. But bordering on unemployable after stirring things up at Luton and is hardly likely to line himself up for further years of moaning about lack of funds and ambition. Odds 25-1

Iffy Onuora – In prime position following his recent return to the Gills. His only managerial experience at Swindon was a disaster but at least he appears to be a thinker rather than a thug, which would be a welcome change after the last four managers. Odds Evens

Phil Parkinson – Did very well at Colchester, came unstuck at Hull. This would be a good opportunity to rebuild his reputation but he’s still an unknown quantity and relatively inexperienced. Odds 15-1

Keith Peacock – A suggestion born more from nostalgia than reality. Odds 100-1

Adrian Pennock – Had a good run as Welling manager and has earned his chance in the hierarchy at Stoke. But his alignment with Pulis and past disputes about his testimonial mean he’s unlikely to be employed by Scally. Odds 40-1

Glenn Roeder – Not entirely convincing at either Newcastle or West Ham butstill surely out of our range at the moment. Wouldn’t be welcomed back by those with long memories, either. Odds 50-1

Mark Stimson – Has built Grays into a decent Conference team renowned for giving players an opportunity to move upwards. Not much is known about his management style but he would be a bold choice quite out of keeping withprevious Scally appointments. Rather tenuous Gills connection not really relevant. Odds 20-1

Peter Taylor – One teensy-weensy problem: he’s manager of a club a division above us. Even if that changed, he could expect to do better than Gillinghamfor his next job. Odds 75-1

Stan Ternent – Can’t see him coming back down south, especially to work with Scally again. Odds 150-1

Neil Warnock – Marmite, and Marmite that we can’t afford. Odds 500-1

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5 Responses to The race for the hotseat (aka poisoned chalice)

  1. chrislynham says:

    All the speculation seems to be categorise candidates into former Gills players (Adams, Iffy, Stimson, Neil Smith, Pennock, Joey Dunne – even Nicky Southall was mentioned by someone having a wibble), former Gills managers (Keefie, Peter Taylor, Gorman, Hess, Stanley), the old perennials (Bassett – why not Fenwick this time? and I’m sure Ian Porterfield would have been mentioned if he wasn’t dead) and a rabble of hard as nails nutters (Allen, Daish, Newell).

    We need someone cheap, someone well-connected and someone who is going to grab the club by the scruff of the neck without losing respect (and not bludgeon around in the manner Jepson allegedly did). Someone like Pulis in 1995, or Ternant in 2004. Won’t be easy. Though Scally has actually got a pretty good record at appointing managers – you can’t fault Pulis, Taylor or Ternant. Nor Hess when you look at things realistically. Cooper’s imminent implosion should have been spotted but his credentials were good, and even Jepson did the job he needed to until the shambles of the last three months.

    Off the field he reckons he’s getting things right, but it’ll all count for nothing if things don’t change on the pitch. Most of the above wouldn’t want to give up what they are currently doing to come to Priestfield. In my rosy world I want Iffy and I want him to turn things round, but I’d fear for his hero status. So my preference is Adams, but I reckon it’ll be Allen. A nutjob, but we embrace them…we’d learn to love him too.

    The Morty Vicker

  2. Bernard says:

    I don’t think it will be, nor do i want it to be, Martin Allen. Massive ego and as mad as a box of frogs. Not for me thank you.

    My vote goes to Joey Dunne. Ex player, loves the club and is held in high regard at Colchester.

    Failing that, Micky Adams.

  3. Flagman says:

    Martin Allen and Scott Fitzgerald worked together at Brentford, so that could be a factor in the final selection process….

    It goes against everything I have ever thought, but I would even consider “Colin” for the job, given the position we are in overall. That’s got to be more than 10 Hail Mary’s

  4. Headley says:

    It’s got to be Martin Allen for me.

    I’m not convinced by Micky Adams at all, to be honest. I think we need another Pulis-type manager – strong-willed, committed and most of all, capable of organising a group of average players into a unit that’s greater than the sum of its parts. From his spell at Brentford in particular, Martin Allen stands out as the best candidate by a street.

    Get him in Scally!

  5. Szonski says:

    Anyone give me odds for the ‘special one’?

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