Feature by Tony Scholes
Updated Tuesday, 1st November 2011
Date and Place of Birth
26th October 1958 - Leicester
Transfers to and from Burnley
from Colchester United - October 1988 (£17,500)
to West Bromwich Albion - March 1991 (£35,000)
First and last Burnley Games
Leyton Orient (h) - 22nd October 1988
Scarborough (a) - 26th March 1991
West Bromwich Albion, Bury, Doncaster Rovers,
Burnley Career Stats
|Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Others||Total|
Profile by Tony Scholes
Winston White was just four days short of his 30th birthday when he made his Burnley debut against Leyton Orient in October 1988, having signed for the Clarets in a £17,500 deal from Colchester United, part of which was paid by a fundraising group set up by the Supporters' Club.
They always say you should strengthen your squad when you are doing well and that's just what Brian Miller had done with the capture of White. Despite having just returned from a 3-0 defeat at Peterborough, Burnley were top of the Fourth Division with 20 points from 10 games.
He was a very experienced player, probably best known to Burnley fans because of his time at Bury a few years earlier, and Burnley, incredibly, were his ninth club.
Leicester born, he joined his local club as an apprentice and won his first professional deal on his 18th birthday. He played in the first team at Leicester, but was never able to establish himself in the first team there and played just ten league games for them. He scored once in those games, that coming in a 3-2 defeat against Liverpool at Anfield in April 1978.
Unable to break through, he moved to Hereford in March 1979 in a £15,00 transfer. He had four years as a regular first teamer at Edgar Street but in the summer of 1983 he left and decided to try his luck in Hong Kong.
When that didn't work out, he came home and after brief spells as a non-contract player with Chesterfield, Port Vale and Stockport, he signed for Bury at the end of 1983. He arrived at Gigg Lane at just about the right time.
Jim Iley was the manager who signed him, but he was soon to be replaced with the appointment of Martin Dobson as player/manager. After settling in, White was an ever present in 1984/85 as Dobson's team won promotion to the Third Division with a line up that included ex-Clarets Joe Jakub, Leighton James, Terry Pashley and Kevin Young as well as Dobson.
From Bury he went to Rochdale on loan before signing for Colchester in February 1987 and 20 months later he was returning to the North West with the Clarets.
Having gone straight into the team for the home game against Leyton Orient, he remained a first team player throughout his stay at Turf Moor. He turned in some outstanding displays but his introduction certainly didn't boost our promotion hopes.
We went into a very poor spell of form that led to Miller being replaced by Frank Casper as manager and it was just after Casper took over that White got his first Burnley goals. Back at Colchester, he scored twice in the first quarter of an hour, the second from the penalty spot, but we couldn't even win that game and ended with a point in a 2-2 draw.
The 1989/90 season, White's only full season as a Burnley player, was a poor one, but things picked up in 1990/91. We were up towards the top of the table for much of the season and, into March, there was strong speculation that Casper would be allowed to strengthen his squad for a final push.
We waited with baited breath on transfer deadline day for news of signings but we were all left stunned when the only news was the sale of Winston White to West Brom. We'd just beaten Scarborough away and Winston had played a blinder. Unfortunately he was gone, we did reach the play offs but lost to Torquay.
He was with West Brom for just over a year and went on to play for Bury, Doncaster and Carlisle before ending his playing career at Wigan, making his last ever appearance for them at Bournemouth in May 1993.
It was a playing career that included over 500 league appearances for thirteen different clubs. That total included 104 for Burnley which produced 14 goals.
He turned in some outstanding performances for us. He was quick and he certainly scored some spectacular goals for us. He was also, at times, a frustrating player, and even today you will still hear his name mentioned whenever anyone uses the phrase 'going round in circles'.
There remains a belief that with Winston White we might well have won promotion in 1991 under Casper's management. It is a certainty that the board made it more difficult for us with his sale. Had that happened there would have been no 1991/92 season under Jimmy Mullen, no fantastic night at York when we came home as Champions. Who knows?
What we do know is Winston White proved to be a very good signing for Burnley at £17,500 and we even made a profit on him with West Brom paying £35,000, now that would have gone down well in the boardroom.