Jim's Dreaming Of The Big Time

JIMMY Walker was one of the heroes of last season's promotion campaign, as the Hammers battled back to the Premiership.

But he bravely sacrificed his fitness for the cause in the Playoff Final against Preston, falling awkwardly and damaging his cruciate knee ligament.

It was meant that the popular goalkeeker has yet to fulfil his dream of playing in the Premiership.

The ex-Walsall stopper remains very optimistic towards his own, and the Hammers prospects this season, though and is full of confidence ahead of a tough December run for the Hammers.

"Everybody knows it's been my dream to play in the Premiership," he said, "so that's going to make it all the more sweet when I finally get there, but it's still a long road.

"It's a long process but I knew that at the start. You do try and get ahead of yourself at times, especially when you see the lads doing so well and you want to get a piece of that.

"It's been fantastic, even Stevie (Bywater, who came on as a substitute for Shaka Hislop against West Brom) has got a little taste of the action. It is great to watch the lads doing so well, but it makes you want to be part of it all the more.

"I'm involved to a certain extent around the ground before the game, but watching the lads go out, it hurts a little bit."

The Hammers came away with a well earned and well deserved point from White Hart Lane, but face the prospect of the visit of Manchester United next week - followed by three away trips to Birmingham, Blackburn and Everton.

"This is what we worked hard for all last year, these games," said Jimmy.

"It's what the fans want to watch and what we want to play in, so we'll go out and do it. All the lads are up for it, and if you're not its time to pack up. There's a real buzz around the training ground so hopefully we can try and get some good results.

"I think the old adage is the way forward. Just take each game as it comes.
I've always used that philosophy but that's the way you've got to look at it now. We've had a massive game at Tottenham and we've got what we can, then we prepare for the next, because we've got another biggy against Man Utd."

The squad is looking healthy at the moment and Pards will need everyone firing on all cylinders in the run up to Christmas, with a bumper run of fixtures.

"We've got such a strong squad now here it's frightening," said Jimmy.

"The gaffer's done a wonderful job getting everyone in and everyone's bonded brilliantly. We've got the right sort of players but we'll keep going and may add to it in the Christmas window. That'll be great for the Club and the players as well.

"Things are bright at the moment but you've got to keep working hard and keep your feet on the ground because there's going to be times when it is tough.

"The confidence of the lads is high. What a great start we've had, and hopefully now we can really crack on as we approach Christmas."