Nigel Walker (footballer)

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Nigel Walker
Personal information
Full name Nigel Stephen Walker
Date of birth (1959-04-07)7 April 1959
Place of birth Gateshead, England
Date of death 2 February 2014(2014-02-02) (aged 54)
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Youth career
c. 1975–1977 Whickham
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1977–1982 Newcastle United 68 (3)
1982 Plymouth Argyle (loan) 0 (0)
1982 San Diego Sockers 19 (1)
1983 San Diego Sockers (indoor) 2 (0)
1983–1984 Crewe Alexandra 20 (5)
1983–1984 Sunderland 1 (0)
1984 Blackpool (loan) 10 (3)
1984–1985 Chester City 41 (9)
1985–1987 Hartlepool United 82 (8)
1987–1992 Blyth Spartans
1992–? Dunston Federation
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Nigel Walker (7 April 1959 – 2 February 2014) was an English professional football midfielder. He played in The Football League for six clubs as well as the North American Soccer League and Major Indoor Soccer League. Walker's death, from cancer, at the age of 54 was reported on 2 February 2014.[1][2]

Playing career[edit]

Walker began his career on the books of non-league side Whickham. He turned professional with Newcastle United in July 1977, making his debut in a 1–1 draw with Bristol City in Football League Division One.[3] His first goal arrived the following season against Leicester City.[4] After 81 first-team appearances, Walker departed for the United States of America to play for the San Diego Sockers in the North American Soccer League in 1982.[5] Earlier in the season he had joined Plymouth Argyle but returned to Newcastle without making any first-team appearances.[6] At the end of the 1982 NASL season, the Sockers entered the Major Indoor Soccer League for the 1982–1983 season. Walker played two games for the Sockers in the MISL before returning to England.

In January 1983 Walker returned to England when he joined Division Four side Crewe Alexandra on non-contract terms.[6] The following summer saw him move back to the north-east with Sunderland, but his only first-team outing was a substitute appearance against Watford at Roker Park.[7] He spent time on loan with Blackpool in the closing stages of the 1983–84 season.

Walker moved to Chester City in July 1984, making his debut on the opening day of the new season against Scunthorpe United. He went on to score a derby winner from the penalty spot against Wrexham and a hat-trick via his left foot, right foot and head[6] in a 4–4 draw against Swindon Town in May 1985. At the end of the campaign he opted to move to fellow Division Four side Hartlepool United, where he played for two years.

In 1987 Walker joined non-league side Blyth Spartans, where he played for five years before joining Dunston Federation. Outside football he gained a first class honours degree in computing from Newcastle Polytechnic and became a maths teacher at Greencroft Business and Enterprise Community School in Annfield Plain.[6]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Former Hartlepool United and Newcastle United star dies aged 54". Hartlepool Mail. Retrieved February 2, 2014. 
  2. ^ Carruthers, Mark (3 February 2014). "Spartans to hold minute's applause for former player Nigel Walker". New Post Leader. 
  3. ^ "Match Details". Newcastle United – a statistical journey. Retrieved 19 January 2008. 
  4. ^ "Match Details". Newcastle United – a statistical journey. Retrieved 19 January 2008. 
  5. ^ "Player Profile". Newcastle United – a statistical journey. Retrieved 19 January 2008. 
  6. ^ a b c d 'Where are they now?', Chester City v. Huddersfield Town matchday programme 27 August 1994; pg. 15
  7. ^ "Player Profile". TheStatCat. Retrieved 19 January 2008.