Walker happy to be at BFC

Walker happy to be at BFC

It’s safe to say that overseas players played a big part in Bengaluru FC’s success last season in the I-League.

Both John Johnson and Curtis Osano were rocks at the back, while Johny Menyongar and Sean Rooney put in valuable shifts through out the season as the debutants won the league in some fashion.
BFC’s latest foreign import, Joshua Walker, has some distance to go to match those standards but the initial impressions have been encouraging.

Talking to reporters at the Bangalore Football Stadium as BFC’s pre-season preparations got under way on Friday, the former England under-20 skipper spoke about his transfer, his friendship with Johnson and whether he moved to London too soon.

“Towards the end of the last season, I got a call from the coach Ashley Westwood and he was explaining that he would like me to come out.

“Since I have known John for a long time, I spoke to him and he told great things and once I met the gaffer in person, there was only one place I wanted to come and try something new,” he says.

You ask him what Johnson told him about the football club and you can immediately realise why Walker took the plunge and moved to India.

“John was saying that ‘you are joining the best club in India’. It’s a massive step up in terms of the size of the club. India is a massive country and it’s a league that is starting to grow,” he says. And you can genuinely see that he means it.

Reservation

Walker, 25, has a young girl back home in England and he concedes that it was tough to leave her behind. “The only reservation (about the transfer) I had was, I have a daughter at home so it was tough to leave her behind.

“I spent everyday with her. She will be two in September, so that was tough. But I am here to work and do well and provide a good living for her back home.”

When you ask him why his career stalled after moving to Watford in 2010, he turns philosophical.
“I didn’t reach the potential that I showed as a youngster. It probably came from the fact that I wanted to run before I could walk.

“I was very impatient as a youngster. In the last couple of years I probably had a downfall because of that.”

You ask him which midfielder he looks up to and pat comes the answer.
“Paul Scholes,” he says with a smile.

When asked whether he will able to handle the spotlight that is bound to fall on him, he is confident in his abilities.

“This will be my team. The lads have made me comfortable and knowing John and sharing a flat with Sean.. I think I can help them and they can help me and we can push on together.”

The former Middlesborough player, who won the prestigious FA Youth Cup while at the club in 2004, also mentions the club ‘s Academy for producing many young players. His friend, Johnson, also came through the same Academy.

Life is full of second chances and it is up to Walker, heavily tattooed with inspirational quotes, to seize the moment.

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