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Winger Walters reveals all about how he beat the bigots

DAZZLING BALL SKILLS: Walters playing for Liverpool against Notts County

ONE OF football’s true pioneers has put pen to paper.

Wingin’ It is the ultimate story of hope over hate, the insightful autobiography of a footballer who beat the bigots.

Due to the colour of his skin, Mark Walters always felt he needed to be twice as good as other football players in order to succeed.

But Mark drew inspiration from the way the late Cyrille Regis handled his racist detractors, and went on to fulfil his potential by flaunting his dazzling ball skills for England.

While a starry-eyed kid in Birmingham, he somehow escaped the clutches of evil paedophile Ted Langford, although his mate wasn’t so fortunate.

He became an idol of the Villa Park terraces, though his move to Scotland was almost halted by a bloodthirsty mob who pelted him with bananas and pigs’ feet. But Walters stood firm to become one of England’s most popular exports.

After a third successive league title, a £1.25 million move to Liverpool reunited him with Graeme Souness. Mark rewrote the record books at Anfield, but would ultimately call his decision to head south “the biggest mistake of my career”.

One of a dying breed of traditional wingers, Mark Walters’ story starts on the streets and ends after 23 years in the professional game.

In between, though, Mark describes how he beat the racists to carve out a career at the top table of football, tells of the anguish of learning how his father was living a double life and reveals how his Liverpool dream turned into a nightmare.

WINGIN’ IT: The Mark Walters Story (Pitch Publishing Ltd) by Mark Walters with Jeff Holmes is priced £18.99.

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