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The majority of the football leagues that are not first-tier around the world have a simple rule: finish at the bottom and get relegated and finish at the top, and get promoted to the league above. And in the English football pyramid, many teams in leagues will be among the lucky ones to get promoted. None of them, however, will attract the interest of a particular English football club in the National League, the fifth tier of the English league system. Ever since their takeover Wrexham Association Football Club have garnered attention from every nook and corner.

The third oldest football club in the world, Wrexham was brought by Hollywood celebrities Ryan Reynolds, famous for his role as the protagonist in Marvel’s Deadpool and Rob McElhenney, the creator and actor of the famous sitcom Always Sunny in Philadelphia in November 2020.

When the club was acquired by the celebrity duo, it was experiencing one of their worst seasons. However, from the following season, the club experienced an incredible rise in performance season by season, leaving them on the cusp of their first promotion in years.

Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney rejuvenate Wrexham 

Before Ryan Reyolds and Rob McElhenney acquired Wrexham, the club had experienced some success, especially in the Welsh Cup, which they have won 23 times and their inspired 1981-82 FA Cup run, where they eliminated Arsenal in the third round. However, no one outside the immediate vicinity knew much about them except their status as one of the oldest clubs.

However, what Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney saw in Wrexham was a brilliant combination of heritage, an incredible community and an incredible story that would attract eyeballs. So when they proposed the bid to take over the club, it got massive support. In the end, their proposal was supported by 98.6 per cent of the 2000 members of the Wrexham Supporters Trust, the club’s owner since 2011.

In their pitch that they delivered to the fans of the club, Reynolds and McElhenney promised three things to the fans;

  • Taking the club to winning ways,
  • Reinforce the values, traditions and legacy of the Wrexham community
  • To make Wrexham a global force in football

And within two years, it is safe to say that the club has achieved all of the above. In addition, the winners also used their massive online presence to heavily promote the club. In fact, due to them, the club got marketing worth millions of dollars for free.

One of the first things that the owners did after joining the club was to invest £2 million, a massive amount for the club. A new gym has opened, and plans are to start work on an entirely new training centre.

On top of that, both the actors attend multiple games with Reynolds even going as far as buying a £1.5 million house near the club to show his devotion to the cause.

The immediate improvement came on the field as Wrexham put the disappointment of the 2019-20 season behind them, finishing eighth in the league. However, what transpired next season would make the football world stand up and take notice of this club.

Wrexham 2021-22 season stats: Rise of the Dragons 

When the 2021-22 season arrived, big things were expected from Wrexham. Unfortunately, their start was rocky with the team taking only 11 points from eight games. However, as the season progressed, results started to improve, with the club at one time going through a 12-match undefeated streak (ten wins and two draws) between March 1 and April 18, 2022.

In their pitch, Reynolds and McElhenney had also promised to bring in quality layers to achieve promotion. And they delivered on that by signing Paul Mullin from Cambridge United, the 2020–21 EFL League Two top scorer.

Mullin was the top scorer in his first season in the league scoring 28 goals. The striker also received ample support from strike partner Ollie Palmer and midfielder Jordan Davies who chipped in with 15 and 14 goals respectively. However, it was still not enough as Wrexham were pipped by Stockport for the top place.

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How are Wrexham doing this season?

The agony of missing out on promotion only motivated Wrexham further, which is why they have been on a different level this season. After 45 games, the Dragons stand at 110 points, the highest point tally ever by a club in all top five leagues of England and have scored 114 goals. Despite some stiff competition from Notts County who are on 106 points, the Dragons have finally clinched promotion to Football League.

Paul Mullin has again been the star scoring 35 goals, with Ollie Palmer adding another 18. And if the duo fire again and help Wrexham defeat Boreham Wood in their next complete their dream of promotion into League Two.

And with the way they are playing, combined with their impressive fan network and their amazing owners, Wrexham’s ambition knows no limits.

Wrexham have also grown in popularity massively on both sides of the Atlantic. As a result, the club will also embark on a tour of the United States in the summer. They also have a friendly match against Manchester United in July.

The club has also had a record increase in the sale of tickets and merchandise, among other things. As Ryan Reyolds and Rob McElhenney said, This is the third-oldest [professional] club on the planet, and we don’t see why it can’t have a global appeal. We want Wrexham to be a global force.” Based on the results till now, this prophecy seems to be on the right track.

Saumy Deepak Tripathi
A Bayern Munich fan who is deeply in love with football statistics. Has a soft spot for goalkeepers! (well only he knows why). You’ll find him vibing on 70’s classic songs and spends an abnormal amount of time cooking.

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