Maurice Lindley was part of a generation whose prospects for a top-class playing career were wrecked by the outbreak of the Second World War.
The Yorkshireman was signed as a raw 19-year-old in 1935, but scarcely could he have imagined then that a generation would pass before he turned out before the Goodison faithful.
Incredibly, although he played in wartime games, Lindley’s full Everton debut did not come until September 1947, when he was nearing his 32nd birthday and had been on Everton’s books for some twelve years. He served as a deputy to wing half Jackie Grant and also to the up and coming T. E. Jones at centre back. A first team shirt was never assured, however, and his career was little more than that of a journeyman’s in a dire Everton team.
In 1953, after barely a half-century of senior games in an Everton career that had spanned almost two decades, Lindley joined the coaching staff of Swindon Town. He was appointed manager a year later, but the spell was short lived. He spent six months as secretary-manager of Barry Town, then in 1955 he followed the path set by his former Everton team mate, Harry Catterick, and became Crewe manager, a position he held for three years.
Lindley then joined the Leeds United coaching staff at a time when the club was revolutionised by the management of Don Revie. Lindley was responsible for player recruitment and brought such players as Peter Lorimer, Billy Bremner, Terry Cooper, and latterly David Seaman through the Elland Road ranks. Later he served as Bradford City’s chief scout, continuing to work until his late-seventies.