Alex Gilbey says there was never a chance he would return to Charlton Athletic in the January transfer window as he is loving life too much at Stevenage.

When the midfielder made the switch from The Valley in August, a clause was inserted into the deal to say Charlton had the option to recall him in the opening week of the new year.

That moment came and went though and the 28-year-old revealed that was partly down to his insistence.

Gilbey said: "I told the gaffer straight away as soon as January was approaching that I didn't want to go back there.

"I think he made some of the right calls, he knows a few people there and told him how I felt.

"In my mind I was never going back to Charlton, I was always staying at Stevenage and getting the job done.

"I'm absolutely loving it with the staff and the players, the changing room is unbelievable. I think I've said it recently, it's the best I've been in so all we have to do now is keep together and keep working hard for each other."

It is a sign of how far the team has come though that the thought process of the Dagenham-born man, while always expecting a good year, has changed with their impressive performances.

He said: "I came in straight away wanting to get promotion and from the conversations I had with the manager and Revs and Rayns, I feel like that was always a goal of mine to be at the top of the league.

"Did I think it would go this well? I don't know, I don't know if anyone did but I spoke to a few lads before I signed.

"I spoke to [Jake Reeves] who I've known for a long time and he told me how good the lads were and so I just wanted to get involved with that.

"And thankfully, at the moment it's paying off."

Boro sit second in the table and victory over Leyton Orient in their last home game has convinced many people that promotion is not only possible but potentially likely.


And Gilbey, who tasted promotion at both Newport County and MK Dons, is definitely one of those.

"Oh I'm sure," he said. "That's what we're working towards. Obviously we're been doing it all season, we have been very good this season.

"It feels exactly the same to both of those times [previously].

"Half the battle is having a good group of characters, a good group of lads who want to work hard for each other.

"We'll just keep working hard and hopefully achieve something."


The next step on the road to success comes on Saturday when another of the promotion-chasing sides, Bradford City, arrives at the Lamex.

And Gilbey recognises the importance of the fixture.

Gilbey said: "Yeah, it is a massive game, especially being at home.

"We owe them one for what they done to us at their place [won 3-0 in September] so everyone is looking forward to that.

"Training has been really good this week. The lads are excited for the weekend and we have three big games this week so hopefully we can start off with a win on Saturday."