HARRY Worley credited an excellent individual performance in Oxford United’s goalless draw at Cheltenham Town to keeping a level head throughout a difficult season.

The defender has fallen down the pecking order since the arrival of Michael Duberry last summer.

But an injury to the experienced centre back handed the understudy a chance in Saturday’s game away to one of United’s promotion rivals.

It was only Worley’s fourth league start of the season, but he showed no signs of vulnerability as the U’s dug in to claim a precious clean sheet.

After learning from a similar experience on the fringes of the first team earlier in his career, the 23-year-old is pleased with the way he has handled being out of the team.

“I was in a similar situation when I was at Leicester and maybe I didn’t deal with it as well as I should have done,” he said.

“I was a younger lad and getting down in the dumps, but this season I’ve just said to myself ‘keep working hard and knocking on the door’.

“It’s all I can do and if it doesn’t work out I can hold my head up high that I’ve given it a right go.

“I think I’ve done that this season and the key is to make sure you are ready when you get a chance, I think I showed when I’ve played that I’m ready when called upon.

“All I can do is try and do my best, but it’s a strong squad and it’s difficult to get in the team.”

There is every chance Worley could get a run in the side, with no indication how long Duberry’s groin problem will take to heal.

United boss Chris Wilder has been impressed with the former Chelsea trainee’s attitude and felt it was typical of the squad in general.

He said: “They’re all the same and I don’t work in any other way.

“I don’t have people where it’s all about them, I’ve never had it and I won’t entertain it.

“It’s about the group of players, individuals will get the hump when they’re not involved and I understand.

“Harry was a regular last year and did ever so well, but I felt we needed a bit of experience and we brought Dubes in.

“The boy will obviously be disappointed, but that performance speaks volumes for what he thinks of us and what he can do himself.”