Chris Taylor says he will never take his opportunity at Barrow AFC for granted as he eyes his league debut with the Bluebirds.

The experienced midfielder is hoping to face Leyton Orient today (Progression Solicitors Stadium, 3pm) after making his first outing in the EFL Trophy against Leeds Under-21s on Monday.

Well-travelled ex-Oldham and Blackburn man Taylor, 33, signed a short-term deal earlier this week and is delighted to have linked up again with former colleague David Dunn.

Taylor says he made sure he remained in top condition during the uncertain time when he was without a club during the Covid-19 lockdown - a situation which has made things more challenging than ever for lower-league players.

He said: “There are a lot of lads out there struggling to get a job, get work, and basically doing what they love doing which is playing football.

“I feel fortunate I'm at a really good club now. I’m ready for the opportunity to play in League Two, with a good squad and a good manager, and I’m really excited for the games ahead.”

Taylor said it was important to stay in good shape in recent months to give him the best opportunity of making a positive move.

He added: “I wouldn’t have lasted 90 minutes on Monday if I hadn’t looked after myself.

“I’ve been here before when I’ve not looked after myself like I should have done and in those circumstances I would probably have lasted 60 minutes.

“I’m glad during my time off that I took it wisely to knuckle down and work hard, and hopefully that gets you the rewards working forward.”

Taylor could be one of three league debutants for AFC today with defender Yoan Zouma and striker Courtney Baker-Richardson hoping to help them to a first win back in the EFL.

The experienced midfield man added: “I think can bring some creativity, and hopefully chip in with a few goals in the final third if I get a chance.

“I’ll be ready if I’m called upon. You need to be ready because you don’t know when you’ll get the nod - it might be this week, next week, the week’ve got to be ready, otherwise you won’t play, simple.”

Dunn is pleased to have Taylor on board but the midfielder says a close connection with the manager only goes so far - and it’s up to him to produce the goods for Barrow.

“It doesn’t matter who the manager is, or who you’re playing with - you’ve got to produce,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re friends or not friends with them. It’s business.”

Taylor insists the first win will not be long in coming for Dunn’s side.

“I don’t think it’s too far away at all,” he said. “It’s just small margins. I watched the game at Carlisle - we weren’t quite at it in the first half but in the second half we could have got something.”