R.I.P. Mick Bates

Former Saddler Mick Bates has passed away today at the age of 73. Mick spent 2 seasons at Fellows Park, between 1976 & 1978, after leaving Leeds United.

R.I.P Mick

Very sad news.

Came to Walsall from that famous Leeds side. Truth be told, he was awful to start off with, but developed into a very important player, who controlled the midfield for us.

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He was the bloke who played for Leeds when Bremner or Giles were injured (or suspended, which wasn’t often enough).
We signed him when he was just short of his 29th birthday. Arguably, the most gobsmacking signing we have made in my time.
RIP Mick.

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That is also my memory of him - the massive turnaround from being a liability on the pitch to everyone’s first name on the team sheet. Apparently he was taken by surprise by the difference in how the game was played in the top division and at our level and it took him a bit of time to adjust - but when he did, boy was he a classy player!

RIP Mick

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Great player for us, once he had settled in

RIP Mick…I agree with the assessments above.

Quality player. RIP Mick

I remember him running the show against Leicester in the 4th round of the FA Cup at FP. As well as Mick we also had Alun Evans who was once England’s most expensive teenager, The Buck and Jeff King in the team- what a line-up.
RIP Mick.

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Yes, he was great for us. I suspect we only got him because he had suffered some bad injuries but we were lucky to get a player of that quality at 29. Still young at 73, which is no age to die.

Sad news indeed.

My recollections are similar to others, where he started off disappointingly and became very good.

RIP Mick.
It took you a while to get going at Walsall but once you did, what a player you were!

I remember going to Valley Parade for an FA Cup replay (we won 2-0) and the Bantams simply could not get the ball off him. Outstanding quality.

RIP Mick.

Don’t know anything about this man but it’s lovely to hear all your memories of him, the football in that respective era and how vivid they are. Tells a tale to me. Really enjoy and appreciate it as a younger man.

Thoughts with his family :red_circle::white_circle:

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Once he settled in he was a very classy midfielder. RIP Mick.
Thanks for the memories.

My first memory of his was of him bossing the midfield in our league cup 1st round tie at Gay Meadow against the Sloppies - a hot evening - him passing it across the field and back again - he looked so much more in control than most of the others - great signing!

Rest in peace.

:disappointed_relieved: Sad news