David Artell says that Brad Walker still has time to develop into a key player for Crewe Alexandra. The Alex boss was keen to sign the former Hartlepool youngster last summer and he has used him as a centre-half and a central midfielder during his debut season with the club.
The 22-year-old made 34 appearances in all competitions last season and he chipped in with some notable goals against Grimsby Town and Rotherham United in the FA Cup.
He lost his place in the second half of the season and was used more sparingly as a substitute, with his last appearance coming against Exeter City in February, but Artell says Brad is still understandably trying to find his feet in South Cheshire.
David told us: “We will keep working with Brad and keep developing him. He understands he has work to do but he will get his opportunities and the challenge is for him to take them.
“We have to remember that he is still a young man. He moved here at 21 from the North West and living in a hotel is tough going. He moved away from home and he has had to mature quickly. I think he is doing that and finding his feet.
“The things he may have taken for granted at home are not there for him, so he has to find his own way and there is no doubt that life can affect your football.
“It is a journey for him and as his manager we will work hard with him because he is a good footballer and still has loads of potential.”