Why Wrexham? This is exactly why – promotion vindicates owners’ decision to buy the club
Ryan Reynolds says Wrexham’s promotion to the English Football League is vindication of his and Rob McElhenney’s decision to purchase the club two years ago.
The Hollywood actors bought Wrexham for £2million in February 2021 and have invested heavily on strengthening manager Phil Parkinson’s squad with some reports suggesting an outlay of over £10m at the Racecourse Ground.
The celebrity backing paid off on Saturday as Wrexham beat Boreham Wood 3-1 in front of 10,000 jubilant home fans to clinch the National League title with a game to spare and end their 15-year exile from the EFL.
The victory sparked wild scenes that will live long in the memories of Wrexham fans who saw their club threatened by a winding-up order in 2011 and nearly went out of business.
Deadpool star Reynolds told BT Sport: “I’m not sure I can actually process what happened, I’m still a little speechless.
“One thing that’s running through my head over-and-over again is people said at the beginning: ‘why Wrexham, why Wrexham?’ this is exactly why Wrexham.
“What’s happening right now is why.
“To see the joy on the players’ faces and, of course, the entire stadium is what it’s all about.”
Reynolds certainly appeared to enjoy the celebrations that went long into the night in Wrexham.
Giggling and sobbing
The Hollywood A-lister tweeted on Sunday morning: “Everything I own smells like champagne, beer and grass.
“I’m still somewhere between giggling and sobbing. This town and this sport is one of the most romantic things on earth. Thank you, @Wrexham_AFC.”
Everything I own smells like champagne, beer and grass. I’m still somewhere between giggling and sobbing. This town and this sport is one of the most romantic things on earth. Thank you, @Wrexham_AFC ⚔️🏴⚔️ pic.twitter.com/cxpVRUpkLq
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) April 23, 2023
Reynolds and McElhenney were joined by Ant-Man actor Paul Rudd – who was pictured drinking in local pubs with fans before kick-off – in their executive seating area as Wrexham recovered from falling behind in 43 seconds.
The co-owners went on to the pitch after the match to hug the players and hold the trophy.
Reynolds also interrupted Ben Foster’s post-match press conference to demand the former England goalkeeper’s jersey.
Foster said: “He texted me – he’s so hungry for the shirt. He said ‘make sure you don’t throw it into the crowd I need that.’
“They (the owners) are brilliant. They absolutely love it. They’re in, I mean they are fully in.
“They are like one of the boys at times. They won’t come in shouting and raving.
“They celebrate and get behind the lads because they understand you’re not always going to win or play 10 out of 10 or smash these out of the park.
“They understand that in sport the opposition wants to win as much as you do, that’s the beauty of it, they don’t always expect instant results.”
Boreham Wood manager Luke Garrard said his play-off hopefuls had been “Mullined” after Wrexham’s top scorer took the game away from them with two superb second-half strikes.
Paul Mullin made it 47 goals for the season after Elliot Lee had cancelled out Lee Ndlovu’s instant strike with a far-post header.
McElhenney said: “I’d like to say Paul Mullin is one of the greatest football players in the world.”
On the crowd’s reaction to promotion, he added: “I think we can hear how it feels to the town and that’s what’s most important to us.
“I think this is a moment of catharsis for them and celebration and for us to be welcomed into their community and to be welcomed into this experience has been the honour of my life.”
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