Defiant Mark Phillips says he isn’t ready to hang up his boots just yet and is keen to earn a new AFC Wimbledon contract for next season.
The former Brentford, Millwall and Southend defender has had a frustrating season at Kingsmeadow after struggling with injury problems.
Phillips spent time away from the club on loan at Aldershot in the Conference and has been placed on a rigorous training programme to build up his fitness.
He was rewarded for his efforts with a rare start in Saturday’s 2-1 home win over York and is hoping for another run out this weekend at Exeter City.
Still only 32, Phillips knows there is huge competition for starting places and admits he needs more minutes on the pitch to prove he is worth an extension to his deal this summer.
He said: “My contract is up at the end of the season so I’m looking to impress. I’m keen to show the gaffer what I can do. Obviously he’s seen what I could do at previous clubs but that doesn’t really mean anything.
“It’s about the here and now and you need to prove it in the here and now.
“I need to get the games though to show him what I can do but I will always give 100 per cent. I’d love to stay at this club another season. I think I played about 40 games last year at Southend and I’ve only just turned 33 so I’m not finished yet.
“All season there has been good quality at the back and in most positions to be honest. We’ve got Deji, Jake Goodman, big Dave Winfield and before that we had Alan Bennett and Adam Barrett.
“I’m confident in my own ability though and when fit I think I’m good enough to hold down my position.
“These boys have been playing week in and week out so they’ve got match sharpness. I’ve got the fitness from training but it is match fitness that I need and you can’t create that other than getting on the pitch.
“York was a bit tough for me but fingers crossed, with the three points, I get another chance and get a bit fitter and a bit sharper. Personally, because I’ve done a lot of running, I think I only need a small run of games to get ready.”
Goodman has been out with a broken toe but stepped up his recovery from the problem with 90 minutes for the development squad on Monday.