Connor Essam hopes to impress at Gillingham

Connor Essam
Connor Essam

Gillingham defender Connor Essam is looking to cement his place in the first team and earn a new contract, 10 days after making his debut.

Essam's first appearance was when he came off the bench in the Gills' 2-1 home League Two defeat by Southend.

The 19-year-old told BBC Radio Kent: "Now the gaffer has given me my chance, hopefully I can stay in the team as long as possible.

"I've been here since I was 10 and I want to be successful at this club."

Essam's prospects took a boost this week when it was announced that fellow defender Matt Lawrence had been made available for loan.

The teenager was recalled from his own loan spell at Dartford by Andy Hessenthaler after Gillingham lost 4-3 to Accrington Stanley.

Having featured in the second half against Southend he has since been handed starts against Port Vale and Rotherham.

"It's a tough position to play at such a young age but I'm happy the gaffer has had enough faith to play me. Hopefully I've proved him right," added Essam.

"I've been a pro for 18 months now. It's been a long stint but you've got to be patient, especially at centre-back.

"My contract runs out at the end of the season. Hopefully I'm proving to the gaffer that I'm worth another contract."