A TOUCHING mural tribute has been created in the home village of Wales star Neco Williams.

The Nottingham Forest defender is from Cefn Mawr and is a former pupil of Ysgol Rhiwabon.

The 21-year-old was of course also part of the Wales squad which competed at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

His glistening career to date has seen him play for the likes of Liverpool and Fulham along the way to becoming a Premier League regular for Forest.

But, the people of his home of Cefn Mawr have certainly never forgotten where he comes from.

In fact, they are immensely proud of what he has achieved and that is now reflected in the form of a 12-foot high mural.

READ MORE: Wrexham's Neco Williams reveals he powered through personal tragedy against USA

An official unveiling of the mural took place on Thursday, December 22, at the back of the George Edwards Hall where the piece now sits proudly.

Created by artist Carol Davies, the mural - made of marine ply - features a picture of Neco in his Wales shirt.

It also includes a dove and the name of his grandfather (Kel) which blends into the number three on the front of his Wales shirt.

His granddad sadly passed away just hours before Wales' World Cup opener v USA, which ended in a 1-1 draw and saw Neco play the full 90 minutes.

Neco's mum Emma Jones, who was at the unveiling on the day alongside her mum and Neco's grandmother Barbara said: "It's amazing, I just can't believe how much it looks like Neco.

"To have Kel's name there and the dove, I just can't get my words out to be honest, it's just really unreal. It's amazing it really is, thank you very much to everyone who was involved in getting up there."

The Leader:

PIC: Neco's mum Emma Jones and grandmother Barbara Jones (fourth and fifth from the left) with members of Cefn Community Council, artist Carol Davies (in yellow) and local residents.

In a speech read out on the day, Cefn Community Council Vice-Chair Derek Wright said: "The local artist Carol Davies emailed me with the idea of this fitting tribute to Neco, to my knowledge the first person for not only Cefn but the Wrexham area to represent Wales at a World Cup finals.

"I passed on the emails to our chairman Phil and to our clerks who whole-heartedly agreed for this project to go ahead which the full community council endorsed at its November meeting on the most visible and suitable building in our village.

"What an excellent job our very talented artist Carol has done on this.

"To say the families of Neco were good footballers in their own right would be a bit of an understatement. The Jones and the Davies, the Chips and the Watts' have been an institution of local football for getting on for 60 years from my memory.

"I saw Neco's granddad Kelvin play one of his first competitive games after he left school for Saron Chapel when he was around 15 keeping much older boys out of the side.

"I had the pleasure also of playing with Neco's uncles Alan and Peter Davies, Ian Jones at Cefn Albion and watching younger brother Stewart playing for the same team.

"I help run Cefn Druids youth where cousins Paul Griffiths, Olly Davies and Sean Jones, all three started in their respective age groups. I took great pride in watching them and Lee Jones excelling at senior football for Cefn Albion.

"In around 2012, Ken Bathers asked me to go and watch Cefn School play a match on the MUGA just over there, it was to see his grandson Kieron play a game against Coedpoeth school. He also happened to mention there was a talented player in that team named Neco.

"To be honest, I don't believe I have ever seen such a talent never mind at that young age of 10, but any age from a local lad. I think Cefn won 9-0 with Neco scoring eight.

"As a Liverpool supporter I've watched, read or heard about his progress from that day to this one."

The Leader:

PIC: A closer look at the Neco Williams mural created by Carol Davies with his grandfather's name (Kel) merging into the number three. 

Fighting back the emotions, Cllr Wright then added: "I feel so proud in the reflective glory Neco has brought to our village.

"We, all of us from this area should be so proud of Neco for what he has achieved in his career so far and what is yet to come. In my family, we believed Neco was the outstanding performer for Wales in this World Cup.

"Just think how his family must feel. Kelvin, or Kel as his grandchildren called him, would have been so proud."

Artist Carol Davies, originally from Northumberland but now living in Cefn Mawr, said: "When I saw how upset Neco was on telly following the death of his grandfather after the Wales game, I thought we have to do something to honour his passion.

"I love the emotion of sport and I was emotional watching that moment and, as Neco has been the jewel in the crown for Wales at the World Cup, he deserves a tribute like this.

"That's when I emailed the community council to see if we could do anything for him and they agreed it was a good idea."

Carol, who attended the event with husband Keith, added that the mural istelf took 'a solid week' to put together.