Edinburgh City captain Josh Walker retires from football

Josh Walker in action for Edinburgh City in 2017.
Josh Walker in action for Edinburgh City in 2017.
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Edinburgh City club captain Josh Walker has retired from football, the club have announced.

The 30-year-old has been plagued by a long-standing knee problem and after suffering another set-back has decided to call it a career.

The former Middlesbrough and Watford midfielder signed for City in January 2017 and helped the Capital club avoid immediate relegation back to the Lowland League.

He played regularly the following season as City consolidated their place in Ladbrokes League Two but missed five months last season as the Ainslie Park side mounted a title challenge.

Outside of his exploits at City, Walker is best remembered among Scottish football fans for scoring the opening goal in Aberdeen's 2-2 draw against Bayern Munich the Uefa Cup knockout stages in 2008. He was on loan at Jimmy Calderwood's side from Middlesbrough at the time.

An Edinburgh City statement read: "Edinburgh City FC regret to announce that club captain Josh Walker has been forced to retire due to a long-standing knee injury.

"Having undergone numerous operations during the course of his career, this latest set back has forced Josh to make the gut-wrenching decision and the club will support him fully moving forward.

"Having joined City in January 2017 during our first season in the SPFL, Josh quickly became a fans’ favourite through his performances and skills, indeed one particular piece of showboating made it all the way to Soccer AM on Sky Sports!

"Established as club captain the following season, Josh was a skilful central midfielder and model professional on and off the park throughout his time with the club, despite lengthy spells on the treatment table.

"Josh has a wealth of experience in the game to pass on and he plans to take stock before deciding on whether to enhance his coaching qualifications; he currently runs his own business in Foot Forward Coaching based in Edinburgh and in the immediacy his goal is to grow that venture. Given the character and determination he has shown to this point we are sure he will be successful in whatever route he chooses.

"The Board and everyone associated with Edinburgh City FC would like to place on record their thanks to Josh for his first-class attitude and performances during his time with the club and wish him every happiness and success in the future."

His manager James McDonaugh added: “It has been a pleasure to get to know Josh over the two years I’ve been here.

"I don’t believe Edinburgh City have seen anywhere the best of his ability, due to his time out with this injury.

"However he is a popular character and having already started his coaching badges and set up his own coaching business I would hope that he can still be involved in the game, helping others at many levels.”