What next for National League champions Wrexham?

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Is winning the National League the start of something really big for Wrexham?

Hollywood actors and co-owners Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney have said their dream is to take Wrexham into the Premier League, but can it really be done?

Here, the PA news agency examines what makes the story so special and what comes next for the Red Dragons.

Wrexham Is The Name

The club’s anthem proudly declares ‘Wrexham Is The Name’ and there is no doubt The Red Dragons have a rich history.

Formed in 1864, Wrexham are the oldest club in Wales and the third oldest professional football team in the world.

Wrexham have won the Welsh Cup a record 23 times and regularly represented Wales in the now-defunct European Cup Winners’ Cup, beating the likes of Porto and FC Zurich and playing against Anderlecht and Manchester United.

Are the owners ambitious?

Wrexham Press Conference – Racecourse Ground
Wrexham co-owners Rob McElhenney (left) and Ryan Reynolds are ambitious to take the club forward (Peter Byrne/PA)

Reynolds said after Easter Monday’s victory over title rivals Notts County that he is “very hooked” on his involvement in football, and the two actors have immersed themselves not only in the club but the city of Wrexham itself.

The pair recently received the freedom of the borough of Wrexham and there is no pulling back from Reynolds’ declaration in October 2021 that they are determined to take the club into the Premier League.

How far can they go?

Sheffield United v Wrexham – FA Cup – Fourth Round Replay – Bramall Lane
Wrexham have not looked out of place against Championship opposition in the FA Cup this season and their fans are dreaming of going a lot higher (Mike Egerton/PA)

Reynolds is among Hollywood stars who can command 20 million dollars per film and his business ventures, notably the sales of Aviation Gin and Mint Mobile, have seen his personal wealth skyrocket.

Deep pockets are needed for the Premier League but reaching the Championship should be achievable and, as history has shown in the past, anything is possible from there.

So expect more signings this summer?

Wrexham v Notts County – Vanarama National League – Racecourse Ground
Former England goalkeeper Ben Foster was tempted out of retirement by Wrexham and may be persuaded to play on next season (Barrington Coombs/PA)

Ollie Palmer was a club record £300,000 signing from AFC Wimbledon and scoring sensation Paul Mullin turned his back on League One-bound Cambridge to sign for Wrexham.

More recruits will come this summer and former England goalkeeper Ben Foster, who was tempted out of retirement at the age of 40 to play a key role in the final weeks of the season, may also be persuaded to stay on.

Anything else to get excited about?

Racecourse Ground file photo
Work will start this summer on developing Wrexham’s Racecourse Ground (Martin Rickett/PA)

Training facilities have been upgraded with a new performance gym, and work will start this summer on a 5,500-seat Kop Stand that will see the Racecourse Ground stage senior Wales internationals again.

Oh, and ‘Welcome to Wrexham’ season two will be out later this year with the eagerly-awaited documentary series covering the triumphant 2022-23 campaign.

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