YORK City boss Nigel Worthington would have no reservations about selecting David McGurk if required despite the long-serving defender's decision to retire at the end of the current campaign.
McGurk's injury problems have persuaded him to make a switch to part-time football from next season but Worthington insisted the 31-year-old centre-back has not necessarily played his final game for the club.
The two-time Press Player of the Year made his last of 333 appearances for the club during January's 2-0 home defeat to Chesterfield.
He was sidelined with a back spasm for a fortnight after that match and, in his absence, Keith Lowe and John McCombe forged a watertight partnership that has seen them yet to concede a goal in open play during 15 games at the heart of City's defence.
Despite almost three months of activity, McGurk has still managed 25 outings this term and Worthington said: "I would have no hesitation in calling on him if the situation demanded. He has all the experience, ability and quality that you look for.
"It would probably be a lovely thing for him to be involved in, after the period of time he's been involved at the club and he has played his part this season.
"If that's not always been on the pitch, then off it he's been professional by keeping a healthy attitude and supporting everybody else."
Worthington also revealed that his decision to recruit McCombe on a two-and-a-half year deal during the January transfer window was no reflection on McGurk's ability or performances, but motivated by the player's ongoing fitness battles.
"TY did very well with Keith but not knowing exactly where we were with him due to the injury situation wasn't always a good thing for myself as a manager," the City chief explained. "That wasn't down to him, but just his body becoming a bit unreliable, so it was important we signed John McCombe for competition and he eventually got in the team."
Worthington added that McGurk had been a model professional at Bootham Crescent and would not rule out the possibility of him returning to the fold in a training ground capacity at a future date.
On McGurk's commitment to the City cause, Worthington said: "If you look at the injuries, Dave has had a career and a half really, but he kept bouncing back, which is credit to him.
"That shows how much he has wanted to play and, in the period of time I have been here and called on him, he has never let us down and has been fantastic around the club.
"For a manager, you can never have enough players like that around. I understand he is looking at bits and bobs in coaching and we will keep an eye on that but, whatever he decides to do next, we wish him all the best.
"Let's hope that, between us, we have another five games to make something happen."