COLCHESTER United are on the hunt for a new physio following long-serving Tony Flynn's decision to retire after 14 years at the club.

The vastly-experienced Flynn has worked at more than 1,000 competitive league games in his 21 years in professional football, with the bulk of those matches spent serving the U's.

He first linked up with Colchester in 2006, joining them at a time when they were about to embark on a historic first-ever season in the Championship.

Promotion-winning manager Phil Parkinson’s departure that summer led to his physio Stuart Ayles joining him at Hull City, creating a vacancy at Layer Road.

Flynn becoming part of new manager Geraint Williams’ close-knit team that was about to guide the U’s to the most successful season in the club’s history.

And he did not look back after that, representing them in more than 700 fixtures in three different divisions.

Colchester chairman Robbie Cowling told the U's website: "Tony Flynn, who joined Colchester United a few months before I bought the club, has decided to retire so that he can spend more time with his family.

"Tony has worked tirelessly for Colchester United and the first team physio role is extremely demanding.

"Tony has provided his services at over 1,000 competitive league games in professional football of which over 700 were for Colchester United over the past 14 seasons.

"He will be a much missed member of our staff and I would personally like to thank him for the role Tony has played at the club."

Flynn clocked up the milestone of 1,000 Football League games as a physio, last year.

Speaking in a Gazette interview, he said the progression in medical and sports science has been considerable since he started working as a physio.

He said: “There’s been a huge advancement in how things are doing, since I first started with for example things like MRI and CT scans and surgical advancement.

“Years ago, an ACL injury like the one that Louis Dunne has just suffered would threaten a career and the knee would be opened right up surgically but now it’s done using things like cameras and it’s absolutely amazing.

“Everything generally improves over time and it’s the same with medicine.

“When I first started, I did everything.

“Things have changed a lot and advanced a lot but I enjoy it as much as I first started, if not more.”

Colchester are now looking to appoint a new physio to replace Flynn and are taking applications for the role.