One of Howard Kendall’s ‘magnificent seven’ signings in the summer of 1981, Mike Walsh was a strapping centre half, who had earned a reputation for dependability during a lengthy spell with Bolton Wanderers.
With his striking blond hair, the defender – not to be confused with the Everton forward of the same name – was one of the acquisitions said to herald a new era at Goodison. Exchanged for £90,000, plus goalkeeper, Jim McDonough, his Everton career started promisingly, but like so many of Kendall’s initial signings – Mickey Thomas, Alan Ainscow, Alan Biley – it quickly petered out. By Autumn he had lost his place to fellow left footer Mark Higgins, and although he returned briefly at left back there was no way back in his favoured position.
In 1983 Walsh joined Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the NASL, but within months of his signing they filed for bankruptcy. He returned to England with Manchester City, but joined Blackpool after only four appearances. In September 1990 Walsh was appointed Bury manager, leading them to the play offs on three different occasions, including, in 1995, their first Wembley appearance in the play off final. He was later assistant manager of Swindon Town and Southport manager at the start of the century. He has since left professional football and settled in Spain, where he runs a restaurant.