Bradford City v Mansfield Town: Graham Alexander makes revelation regarding 'desperate' Jamie Walker

IN BRADFORD City’s current position where only wins will keep their season alive as a competitive entity, they need as many game-breakers on the pitch as possible.

Even if they are not at full fitness.

Jamie Walker is a case in point. His ability to unlock doors in the final third is likely to be key if City are to somehow nick into the top seven, with Graham Alexander revealing that the Scot was keen to put his hand up and help out despite not being at full pelt following a deep-seated hamstring injury.

The Bradford chief said: “He’s missed three months of football and training. He hasn’t been training with us that long.

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Bradford City's Jamie Walker. Picture: Getty Images.Bradford City's Jamie Walker. Picture: Getty Images.
Bradford City's Jamie Walker. Picture: Getty Images.

"If we were at an earlier stage of the season with a lot longer left, his return to play might have taken another week to 10 days.

"But the games are running out and Jamie’s absolutely desperate to help us be successful.

"He’s not up to full match speed, but neither is Tyreik (Wright). Tuesday was his first 90 minutes for a long time.

"But they are both creative, attacking players and great options. We just have to give them the minutes to get up to speed as we know how valuable they are to us.

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"We finished the game (on Tuesday) with two defenders and Tyreik at left back. We had as much attacking threat as possible.

"We’ll always put teams out to attack games. Jamie gives us something that we’ve missed because he’s slightly different.

"He was a really bright spark for us when we first came in. Unfortunately, we lost him for three months and it’s great to have him back.

"Fingers crossed, he stays fit for the rest of the season."

City play host to leaders Mansfield on Saturday, with their ability to trade punches with the division’s best likely to be significantly tested.

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Alexander added: "They’ve been striving to get out this division for a good few years and have gone really close.

"They’ve got a vastly-experienced manager who has been there for a little while and gone through the ups and downs with play-offs and so forth.

"They have similar aspirations to us, but are obviously in a much better position.

"That’s where we have to show we can compete with the best in the division in this one-off game.

"If we can do that, then we have to show we can be consistent and do it in the next game and the one after that. But they are all different challenges.”