Joe McBride came from a strong footballing heritage: his namesake and father was a former Scotland international and Celtic striker, who ranks amongst Scotland’s most prolific post-war goalscorers. Perhaps given this upbringing, steeped within the Scottish football establishment, it was a surprise that McBride junior chose Everton on leaving school.
After two seasons of Central League football, Gordon Lee pitched the 19 year-old winger in the Everton first team on Boxing Day 1979. A slight player, who jinked and dribbled his way along the Everton left, there were high hopes that McBride might be part of the youthful renaissance Lee was trying to instil at Goodison. When Everton kicked off the 1980/81 season, McBride was one of five Everton players aged 21 or younger, and a sixth – Billy Wright - was only 22.
Alas, this inexperience often showed and it was not enough to sustain Everton through the new season. After finishing fifteenth, Lee left the club and under Howard Kendall’s charge McBride struggled to get a game. In August 1982, he joined Rotherham United and after a couple of years in England’s lower leagues, followed the illustrious path set by his father and joined Hibernian. A fine career in his homeland followed.