Why Are There No Professional Football Teams In Cornwall?




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There are many things that Cornwall is famous for, such as its impressive coastline, delicious cuisine, and fantastic ales. 

However, one thing that the county does not have is a professional football team. While several local clubs and teams keep the sport alive, you will not find any professional football clubs in the region. This may come as a bit of a surprise, especially as British or traditional football originated in England.

There are quite a few reasons why Cornwall has no professional football teams and has never had one. This guide will help you know about them as well as the changes that are expected in the future as far as the sport is concerned. 

What Football Clubs Are Based In Cornwall?

Cornwall does not have a professional football club, which is why most fans in the county support teams from Devon. However, this county is not alone in its lack of professional football clubs, as such clubs are absent from almost the entire West Side Country. Even the largest city, Bristol, only has a Championship Team. 

Truro City is the only football team in Cornwall that has won a national award, the FA Vase in 2007. It is also the biggest football team in the region and plays in the sixth tier of the English Football League.

However, for Cornwall, it is not just football but most sports that lack professional clubs, except for a few, like rugby. The county has a professional rugby team called the Cornish Pirates, who play at Mennaye Field in Penzance and are in the second tier of professional rugby. 

Why Doesn’t Cornwall Have A Football Team?

Cornwall has around 400 Football Association (FA) affiliated football teams, according to the Cornish County Football Association. However, none of these teams are present in the professional football scene, which includes teams competing in the top four tiers of the English Football League. 

There are a few reasons why no professional football teams exist in Cornwall.

1. Low Population

Cornwall is among the least densely populated counties in England, and its population is very dispersed. It is made up of several small towns like St. Ives and Cambourne, each of which has less than 40,000 inhabitants. This makes it challenging for Cornish teams to earn revenue as there are not enough fans willing to pay for the sport. 

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2. Remote Location

The county has a remote location, which means that football clubs will need to spend more on travel than teams from other regions. This also reduces the amount of revenue that the teams get to keep. 

On top of that, Cornwall is only a two-hour drive from the Metlife Stadium, which often hosts professional teams like the Giants and the Jets. These teams are unlikely to allow a reduction in their revenue, which is very likely if a professional team from Cornwall starts playing. 

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3. Football Clubs In Devon

Since there has never been a professional football team in Cornwall, fans in the county support teams like Exeter City and Plymouth Argyle, located in Devon. This means that the revenue that clubs in Cornwall could earn flows to those in Devon. 

Additionally, skilled football players in Cornwall are signed on by these clubs in Devon, which can offer better facilities and have a more impressive reputation. Those looking to make their career in football tend to join these clubs rather than those in Cornwall. 

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4. Facilities   

It is hard to find good football stadiums in Cornwall, and the county does not have a single stadium suitable for a professional football team. As a matter of fact, Truro City has to travel to Devon to play. And this lack of facilities is a major obstacle for the county to have its own professional football team.


5. County Image

Cornwall is often known for being a place where people move to after retiring, which is why many youngsters want to move out. This means that interest in the sport is not as high as in other regions, which is another reason why having a professional football team is not considered important.


Changes On The Horizon

While Cornwall does not have any professional football team currently, plans are in place to create a stadium that can help change this situation. This stadium is expected to have a 10,000 seating capacity, enough for Truro City football matches and Rugby Union Side Cornish Pirates. The stadium will come up in Threemilestone, a town located three kilometres west of Truro.  

However, it is not known when the stadium will become usable. The construction of the Stadium of Cornwall, as it is being called, will allow teams like Truro City to move up the ladder and achieve a professional-level ranking. This is similar to what happened when the Liberty Stadium was constructed in Swansea, allowing its team to progress professionally. 

Another thing that can help Cornish clubs move up the ladder is the introduction of non-league days. These focus on the importance of non-league football and try to highlight how enjoyable it can be. Non-league days can help local teams attract fans, providing them with the revenue required to move up the football pyramid. 

Final Thoughts

Currently, football teams in Cornwall aren’t well-known and usually play in the lower rungs of English football due to the lack of funds and infrastructure. But even though it can be disappointing to know that there are no professional football teams in Cornwall, this is expected to change in the future.

With the construction work on the Stadium of Cornwall starting soon, the day may be near when clubs like Truro City can progress up the ladder and acquire professional certification. Till then, efforts are being made to promote local games to retain an interest in the sport in the region and encourage fans to support local teams. 

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