Possibly one of the most hated men in the football league has emerged from nowhere to become favourite for the ‘undesirable’ job at Gillingham

In doing so he has raced ahead of highly regarded managers such as Steve Evans and Shaun Derry as the race heats up further as time passes.

That man of course is Graham Westley

He was most recently of Newport where he got embarrassingly sacked when they were 11 points adrift before former Gills defender Micheal Flynn pulled of a miracle to keep them up so it may come as a shock too many that he remains favourite for the job and it best to say, it hasn’t exactly been met with the best reception with most.

Westley was seen at the Gillingham Northampton game in the stands at Priestfield which alerted Gills fans who say they prefer Lovell.

Quote from Gillingham fan on their forum

Scally was willing to experiment with Pennock last season and there was no immediate new manager “bounce” to improve our results. Yes, we avoided relegation but it was debatable whether he had done enough to warrant carrying on this season and assembling his own squad.

Having decided to give AP the benefit if the doubt (and also probably for financial reasons) he continued and to be fair to him he effectively had to shop at Poundland.

Not only has Westley been a disaster at his previous two clubs but I suspect Lovell would go if overlooked or Westley would want his own coaching staff and players at further heavy cost to the club.

In the past. I have been guilty of moaning about the time Scally takes to appoint a new manager but in this case the timing of Centreplate case along with the fact that we can not sign any players under contract until January, plus our form in the last two games with the existing cheap players brings us to an obvious conclusion. Keep Lovell till the end of the season

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The former Stevenage and Preston manager – who had a brief spell at Gillingham early on in his playing career – is now odds-on with both SkyBet and Bet Victor.

Westley’s long career in management started at non-league Kingstonian. He would eventually end up at Stevenage, who he has managed on three different occasions.

He won the FA Trophy with Stevenage, shortly after losing out in the Blue Square Premier play-offs. He went one better the following year and clinched the league title in 2010.Westley completed back to back promotions with a win in the League 2 play-off final in 2011.

Preston, then in League 1, swooped for him in January 2012 and after a 15th place finish in his first season he overhauled the squad.  Just over a year after his appointment he was sacked, with the club sitting just above the relegation zone.

His return to Stevenage ended in relegation, finishing bottom of League 1 in the 2013/14 season. He fought back the following year, taking them into the play-offs, but losing out to Southend in the semi-finals.

Westley enjoyed a short and unsuccessful spell at Peterborough before landing the Newport job.

He is the latest manager to be linked with the Gills. The club have already approached mansfirld Steve Evans who is having increasingly intense arguments with his own supporters while former title-winning manager Martin Allen is ready to step in.

The Gills are currently under the caretaker management of Steve Lovell, who guided the team to a 1-0 win over Peterborough and a 2-1 loss to Northampton. He replaced outgoing director of football Peter Taylor.

Lovell has received backing to get the management job himself and is as short as 8/1 with the bookies. Chairman Paul Scally has been searching for a manager since Ady Pennock left the club.



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