Vinny Samways

Vinny Samways was born in Bethnal Green, London, and began his football career in Tottenham Hotspur’s youth system. He won the FA Cup with Tottenham in 1991 and helped them reach the semi-finals of the competition in 1993. He was a regular player in the side which reached the quarter-finals of the European Cup Winners’ Cup during the 1991–92 season. He joined Everton in 1994 and was part of the Everton squad that reached the 1995 FA Cup Final. In the 1995–96 season, he spent time on loan at Division One sides Wolverhampton Wanderers and Birmingham City. Samways enjoyed success in Spain with UD Las Palmas during the late 1990s and early 2000s, where he was team captain and played a key role in the Canary Islands side. Las Palmas supporters received the player. A group of fans insisted on bringing a British flag to every home match in his honour, going so far as to name their fan club after him. The reasoning for such adulation can be seen in the way teammate Paquito Ortiz states Samways acted differently to other foreign players in Spain, giving his all from the beginning and not needing a period to settle in. Bethnal Green is a tough place to grow up. At the heart of London’s East End, it is a little different to the beaches of Gran Canaria. Yet there is one thing that connects them: namely, Vinny Samways, a midfielder who was brought up in the East End before moving on to enjoy a distinguished career in Spain.

In 2002–03, he played ten league games with Sevilla FC, becoming the first Englishman to play in the Sevilla derby against Real Betis.

He then returned to England, where he spent the 2003–04 season with Walsall in Division One.

He then went back to Spain, joining lower league side Algeciras CF, and retired in 2005, aged 36.