1:36 PM July 28, 2022
Josh Walker is hoping to stay fit to help fire Dagenham & Redbridge to the National League title in 2022-23.
The striker has extended his contract with the Victoria Road club until 2025, having netted 11 times last season following his move from Barnet.
And the 24-year-old hopes to go close to doubling that tally for Daryl McMahon’s men as they bid to secure a return to the Football League.
“I’m delighted. I’ve been here a year now and felt at home ever since I’ve come so I think it’s only right to sign for another three years. I’m happy,” he told the club website.
“We’ve seen stuff like Covid, so we don’t know what’s going to happen, so I’m happy to have that security for another three years.
“My target for this season is probably 20 (goals), trying to build on that 11.”
Walker netted five times in his first eight games last season, but then did not play for more than two months.
But having netted on his return in the FA Trophy at Truro City he enjoyed another purple patch of five goals in nine games, before playing more of a role off the bench in the closing months of the campaign as Junior Morias and Paul McCallum enjoyed a fruitful partnership.
Now back to full fitness, Walker is relishing the new term and feels the squad is looking strong.
He added: “I’ve been fine throughout the whole of pre-season. I had a groin injury last season that kept me out for a couple of months but I’m fit now and raring to go for the start of the season.
“Everyone has gelled well. The new signings that have come in have fitted in perfect and I think we’re strong contenders for promotion, even winning the league this season, so hopefully we can do that.
“All the boys are raring to go, we’re just waiting for that first game on August 6.
“Keeping injury-free is my main target. If I can do that, I think I can definitely get 20 goals.”
Boss McMahon is happy to keep Walker among his attacking options and also hopes to see him hitting the net more regularly.
He said: “We’re delighted that Josh has decided to sign a new deal with us. He’s got fantastic potential and had a good first season with us with a good start and strong finish to the campaign.
“We’ll be looking to keep Josh fit for a whole season now, and he’s had a good pre-season which stands him in good stead.
“With Josh, Angelo (Balanta), Junior (Morias), and Macca (Paul McCallum) we’ve got a really strong frontline.
“I think everyone at the club would say that Josh’s finishing ability is exceptional, and we’ll love seeing him fill his potential, scoring lots of goals here with us.”