Following Andy Aitken's departure in February 1909, Boro had been managed by secretary-manager John Gunter for sixteen months before Walker signed on 1910-06-27.
Controversy was set to follow Walker throughout his brief time as manager. Soon after his appointment, he was in trouble for illegally approaching one of his former Airdrie players to try to convince him to sign for Boro. He was caught and banned for four weeks, while the club were fined £100.
On 1911-01-16, an FA Commission decided that money had been offered and both Walker and Gibson-Poole were suspended from football for life. Some believed that Walker had only been a pawn, but despite a 12,500 strong petition to the FA to reconsider his ban, it was upheld.