Signed for £75,000 from Scunthorpe United in November 1985 as cover for Pat Van Den Hauwe, Neil Pointon was initially seen as a player for the future, but went on to immediately play a more prominent role than had been first expected. An injury crisis at Goodison had forced Van Den Hauwe to switch to the centre of the Everton defence, freeing up the left back position for Pointon. He went on to make 21 appearances during the 1985/86 season, eventually ceding his place to Derek Mountfield as Everton finished runners-up to Liverpool.
Still to turn 21 when he joined Everton, Pointon arrived at Goodison with a wealth – almost 160 senior appearances – of lower-league experience. Among the fittest players at the club and renowned for his love of press-up marathons, he was a quick and staunch tackler, keen to assist in attack. Evertonians got an early glimpse of his attacking prowess on his debut – a 6-1 drubbing of Arsenal – when Pointon broke into the Arsenal box and hit a post.
Although chances were limited during the 1986/87 season following the arrival of Paul Power, Pointon made enough appearances to claim a League title medal. Over subsequent seasons he proved a capable deputy to Van Den Hauwe, slotting in when the adopted Welshman was struck down with the most unexpected ailments. While the acerbic nickname ‘Dissa’ was unnecessarily harsh, never did Pointon really make a convincing case to claim the number three shirt as his own.
In summer 1990, he joined Manchester City as a £600,000 makeweight in the £900,000 deal that brought Andy Hinchcliffe to Everton from Manchester City. He continued performing in the top flight until the mid-1990s, later turning out for Joe Royle’s Oldham Athletic. A three-year spell at Hearts was followed by time in the English lower leagues. Pointon now works as a coach at Bolton Wanderers youth academy.