Sam Walker targeting a 100% league appearance record as Colchester United push for the play-offs

U's keeper Sam Walker, making a fine save during the home win over Mansfield last month. The U's ent

U's keeper Sam Walker, making a fine save during the home win over Mansfield last month. The U's entertain already-promoted Doncaster on Good Friday. Picture: STEVE WALLER - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Sam Walker is on course to play every league game for Colchester United this season, and he is ready to help plot the U’s path into the League Two play-offs.

Sam Walker, a mainstay for the U's all season. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Sam Walker, a mainstay for the U's all season. Picture: STEVE WALLER - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Walker missed every league game last season, due to a long-term knee injury, and so was powerless to prevent the U’s from suffering relegation into League Two.

The previous campaign, in 2014-15, the former Chelsea trainee played 45 of 46 league games, so he would love to go one better and complete a whole set this term, a feat he achieved in 2013-14.

“It’s been a target of mine throughout my whole career, to go a whole season without missing a (league) game,” explained Walker.

“I take great pride in the big number of games I have already played, at my age (25), and the amount I have played in the past despite last season’s injury.

“For me to see out the season, with seven more games and to play every minute and be a part of it, and be the mainstay of the team, would be great.

“That’s what I set out to do at the start of the season.

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“With the type of injury that I had last year, you are never quite sure how players are going to come back from that.

“You see that up and down the country, in Europe and all over the world – those type of injuries can take a long time to come back from.

“So a lot of credit goes to the way I was managed, especially by the manager (John McGreal) and his assistant (Steve Ball) in pre-season, and also (goalkeeping coach) George Bankole, Stef (sports scientist Stefano Russo) and Tony Flynn (physio), who managed my workload and my training load.

“I’ve been fit all season. In fact, I haven’t missed a training session, let alone a game!” added Walker.

The U’s are just two points adrift of the play-offs, following Saturday’s excellent 2-1 home win over promotion rivals Luton Town.

It was their ninth win in their last 11 home fixtures, although on the road McGreal’s men have not tasted victory since a 4-2 success at Stevenage on Boxing Day.

They will be looking to put that record straight at Notts County this Saturday.

“We have three very winnable away games left,” said Walker.

“And if we go on to win those three away games, then the questions marks over our away form will disappear.”

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