Written by Samuel Turner |
Cornwall is not a hotbed of talent when it comes to football, for a whole host of reasons, whether it is due to the lack of facilities or the popularity of the Rugby Union . Either way, there are few recognisable footballers that hail from Cornwall, past or present.
With that being said, we have rounded up some of the best Cornish footballers playing the game today. who have forged successful careers for themselves despite the odds being stacked against
So, in no particular order, here are the top 3 footballers from Cornwall:
1. Jack Stephens
Born: 27/01/1994, Torpoint
Now: Southampton Defender
When it comes to Cornish talent, Jack Stephens is arguably the cream of the crop. Stephens was snapped up by Plymouth Argyle at the age of 11. Stephens moved to Southampton from Plymouth in 2011 and has now played over 50 games for the Saints in the Premier League, making him the only Cornish player to be playing top flight football as of now.
Stephens has also played at multiple England youth levels including playing 8 games for the under 21s from 2015 to 2017 helping England to win the prestigious Toulon Tournament in 2016, he has yet to become a full England international.
2. Isaac Vassell
Born: 09/09/1993, Newquay
Now: Birmingham City Striker
Birmingham City striker Isaac Vassell should be well known to football fans in Cornwall having scored 28 goals in 100 appearances for Truro City. Vassell got his first opportunity with Plymouth Argyle where he was in the same youth team as Jack Stephens and a player appearing next on this list Christian Walton.
Vassell enjoyed great success at Truro City with his goals helping the Tinners secure promotion to the National League South in 2015, furthermore though his spell at Truro City only lasted two full seasons before he left for Luton Town in 2016, it somewhat rebooted Vassell’s career from being from being a Plymouth Argyle reject to being a reported £1,000,000 player after singing for Championship Side Birmingham City in 2017.
Vassell’s time at Birmingham City has been plagued with injuries meaning his record for the Blues has not been great, having only scored 1 goal in 17 games over 2 seasons. Vassell has recently returned from a 14-month hip injury and will be looking to work his way into Gary Monks Birmingham strike force in the near future.
Isaac Vassell career so far is similar to that of Jaime Vardy, in the fact he to has been able to make the move from the Non-League football to League football, however unlike Jaime Vardy, Vassell has yet to have gone from Non-League to Legend Status, but there is still time.
3. Christian Walton
Born: 09/11/1995, Wadebridge
Now: Wigan (On loan from Brighton & Hove Albion) Goalkeeper
Christian Walton is yet another product of Plymouth Argyle youth system on our list. The Current Wigan Goalkeeper was youngster on Plymouth Argyle’s books from 2005 to 2011 before making a move to Brighton and Hove Albion in 2013. Walton has only made 3 appearances for the Seagulls and has been loaned out on 6 different occasions to 5 clubs. He is currently on loan at Wigan for a second time, having been between the sticks for them last season where they gained promotion to the Championship. Walton is having the most successful period in his career so far, at Wigan, and rumours suggest that he may be looking to make his move to Wigan permeant in the future.
Like Jack Stephens, Walton has been capped at under 21 level for England, but is yet to gain a full cap. Unlike Stephens though, Walton does not have too much experience under his belt and is still relatively unknown to most football fans. However, yet again like Jack Stephens he still has youth on his side to develop, and as he is a goalkeeper, and as goalkeepers usual peak later than outfield players, we have not at all seen the best of Walton yet. Christopher Walton is definitely an exciting prospect and could be a familiar name in the future.
While this current batch of Cornish footballers have yet to achieve the same heights as past Cornish footballers such as; Nigel Martyn, Mathew Etherington, Mike Trebilcock, the future looks bright for today’s Cornish footballers. Both Stephens and Walton have the potential to become future England internationals, while Vassell looks like he will have a successful career in the football league.