Yet Walton credits her time at university for showing her the value of a stable financial platform outside of the sport.
“It did teach me about the ‘real world’ and managing my life,” says the midfielder.
“It took a lot of sacrifices and determination but I did it. I learned that if you want something you have to work hard for it. I did and I am now reaping the rewards.”
Those rewards are some of the biggest in the game. At the time of writing, Notts County sit third in WSL 1, three points behind leaders Chelsea and Walton will soon appear in her third FA Women’s Cup final against the blues on August 1. County booked their place in the Final at Wembley after beating Everton 3-0 at Goodison back in May.
Although she confesses she never fulfilled her potential at international level, Walton continues to mix it with the very best in the world, as well as playing alongside England internationals like Ellen White and Laura Bassett.
And when it’s all over? Well Walton will not be stuck for ideas or opportunity.double-arrow“
If the salaries can increase, it makes those decisions about ‘job v football’ easier.
“It’s very important though to have something to get your teeth into once you stop playing so you can live, hence why I went to university and got a degree.
“Outside of football, I don’t have much interest in working within the sport industry. I have a business head and a huge passion for the fashion industry.”
Having that qualification and expertise already in her locker, and support from family, friends and the FA, Walton looks likely to translate her successful career on the pitch, to an equally fruitful one off it.
“Mainly to fund my clothes and shoe addiction!”