Worksop, Nottinghamshire born goalkeeper Walter “Buns” Scott began his football career with Worksop West End in 1904 and played for Worksop Central in 1905 before joining Midland League club Worksop Town in 1906. He signed for Second Division club Grimsby Town in May 1907, initially as understudy to Harvey Carmichael, making his Football League debut at Oldham Athletic in November that year, soon pushing Carmichael into the wilderness and establishing himself as The Mariners’ undisputed number one goalkeeping choice. In 1908-09 he missed only one match, but he developed a reputation as the King of Penalties, saving a remarkable 14 penalty kicks from 17 taken against him. In particular he established a Football League record by saving three penalties in a single match, his feat coming against Burnley at Turf Moor in February 1909.
In January 1910 he was signed by First Division club Everton for £750 after 85 matches for Grimsby Town, who lost their League status at the end of the season, and he made his Everton debut in a 1-0 derby win against Liverpool at Anfield the following month, replacing Everton’s more famous eponymous goalkeeper Billy Scott (no relation). Despite a run of matches during March and April, he couldn’t unseat Billy Scott and only a further 7 of his 18 matches for The Toffees followed the next season as Everton finished fourth in the League Championship.
Scott was transferred to Sunderland in the 1911 close season, and he made 34 appearances in their 1911-12 campaign as they finished eighth in the First Division, however the following season he was dropped after three straight defeats with ten goals conceded in September and then permanently displaced by the arrival of Joe Butler from Glossop at the start of the following month. Sunderland went on to win the League Championship.
Scott moved to Irish League club Shelbourne in the spring of 1913 after 38 matches for The Wearsiders, and he represented The Irish League in five successive Inter-League fixtures from March 1913, when he made his debut in a 1-1 draw with The Southern League at The Den, Millwall, through to October 1914 in a 2-1 defeat to The Football League at The Hawthorns. Scott then joined Belfast United in 1915 and during the War he guested for Millwall Athletic and Brentford.
After the conflict he returned to Worksop Town in August 1919 and then to Football League action with his old Second Division club Grimsby Town in January 1920, where he played 19 matches before the season end after coming straight into the side in January 1920. Although his arrival heralded a considerable upturn in form, The Mariners having lost all but 6 of their 23 matches before his re-introduction, he couldn’t help save them from finishing bottom of the League and suffering relegation. Scott joined Midland League club Gainsborough Trinity in June 1920, his final club before his eventual retirement.