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NIGEL WALKER 1959-2014

Former Chester City player Nigel Walker has died at the age of 54 after a long fight with cancer. The Gateshead-born inside-forward made 41 league appearances in his only season at Sealand Road and the nine goals he scored during that 1984/85 campaign placed him second behind Stuart Rimmer.

Nigel signed as a professional for Newcastle United after leaving school in July 1977 and made his debut, against Bristol City, in a First Division fixture in November the same year. Over the next five years he made 70 league appearances for the Tyneside club before being released at the end of the 1981/82 campaign. During summer 1982 he moved to the USA where he played for San Diego Sockers in the NASL.

On his return to England Nigel signed non-contract forms for Crewe Alexandra and remained a regular in their side until the end of the 1982/83 season. A move to Sunderland followed but after only one substitute appearance he was loaned out to Blackpool. Nigel made a dream debut for the Seasiders, scoring a hat-trick in a 5-1 victory against Northampton Town

When Nigel was not offered a new contract by Sunderland he was snapped up by John McGrath and made his league debut for City in the 1-1 draw with Scunthorpe United at Sealand Road in August 1984. Despite a large influx of new signings Chester struggled under McGrath with goalscoring proving a particular problem. After McGrath was sacked in December Mick Speight took over as manager and the introduction of strikers Stuart Rimmer and Ricky Greenhough had a positive impact on Nigel who started to find the net on a regular basis.

Nigel also took over penalty duties from the departing Peter Zelem and his first goal for the club came from the spot in a 2-1 victory over local rivals Wrexham on Boxing Day 1984. He finished the season with a flurry of goals including two against Port Vale and a hat-trick in the 4-4 draw with Swindon Town at the County Ground.

When Harry NcNally took over as manager Nigel returned to the North-East and signed for Hartlepool United where he made 82 appearances prior to being released in summer 1987. He went on to play non-league football for Blyth Spartans and Dunston Federation Brewery while working as a maths teacher.

Chester FC send their condolences to his family and friends.


Chas Sumner [3/2/14]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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