Luton keeper earns England U21 call-up

Luton Town keeper Christian Walton has been called up England U21s for their Euro 2017 double-header this week.

Monday, 3rd October 2016, 9:42 am
Updated Wednesday, 5th October 2016, 2:46 pm
Christian Walton has been called up for the England U21s
Christian Walton has been called up for the England U21s

The 20-year-old, who moved to Kenilworth Road on season-long loan from Championship side Brighton & Hove Albion in the summer, will meet up with the squad for the UEFA European Championship qualifiers against Kazakhstan and Bosnia & Herzegovina.

Walton, who has 12 caps at U19 and U20 level, has been in the U21 squad before, while at Bury last term, but had to withdraw through injury. although has earned his recall from former U20 manager Aidy Boothroyd, after Sunderland stopper Jordan Pickford pulled out, following Gareth Southgate’s elevation to senior boss.

The keeper has travelled to St George’s Park to prepare for the flight to Aktobe for Thursday’s clash with Kazakhstan at Central Stadium, before returning to face Bosnia & Herzogovina at Walsall’s Banks’s Stadium on Tuesday week.

Hatters boss Nathan Jones told the club’s official website: “I’m delighted for Christian that he has once again gained international recognition.

“He has been a key part to our excellent start to the season and it’s justly deserved.”

Walton is the first current Luton Town player in 20 years to be called up by England U21s, and one of 12 men to have achieved the recognition.

The last was a goalkeeper too – Bedford-born Kelvin Davis in 1996 – with thee others Tim Breacker, Paul Elliott, Paul Futcher, Julian James, Mike Newell, Scott Oakes, David Oldfield, Brian Stein, Mitchell Thomas and Paul Walsh,

Walton will now miss tomorrow night’s EFL Trophy clash with West Bromwich Albion and the League Two encounter with Crewe Alexandra on Saturday, as youngster Craig King is expected to deputise.