Gillingham boss Steve Evans has given the biggest hint yet that reported Charlton and Millwall target Tom Eaves is likely to leave the club this summer.

The 22-goal forward starred for the Gills in League One last season but looks set to snub a fresh deal at Priestfields, re-igniting interest from the London clubs.

With the Lions and Addicks in the hunt for a forward, new Gills manager Evans’s latest comments around the 27-year-old has furthered speculation of a move to the Championship.

“Tom has done a wonderful job with some of his goals, they have been stunning,” Evans told Kent Online.

“Sometimes players want to challenge themselves at higher levels or bigger clubs and football should always be about progression.”

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'He deserves it'

Eaves has spent the majority of his career playing in the third and fourth tiers of English football after spells with Bristol Rovers, Shrewsbury, Yeovil and Rotherham, Evans however believes he is capable of playing at a higher level.

Having been scouting for the Gills for the last two months before being officially unveiled as manager, the former Peterborough boss dropped the biggest hint that Eaves would be leaving the Gills after admitting he would need to replace the forward.

“The difficulty is that we have lost some good players but therein lies the opportunity to bring some players in.

“I don’t think Tom (Eaves)would have had a multiple amount of options when he signed for Gillingham but he has got his game together and he is a wonderful kid, he deserves it.

“I have given the chairman and Tom (Lawrence), the CEO, a list and I gave them that when I came in on Thursday morning.”

There were rumours that Eaves was to spend a trial period at Sparrow Lane, Charlton’s training ground, before going on pre-season tour with the club before Bowyer made a final decision on taking the forward.

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