Leader Preview: Wrexham FC v Salisbury City

Here’s my column from last week’s Leader. It forms part of the paper’s comprehensive pre-match coverage every Friday, featuring interviews, an in-depth look at the opposition and lots of statistical analysis. All content in the column (c) www.leaderlive.co.uk.

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We welcome Salisbury to The Racecourse tomorrow still seeking our first home win over them. They’ve come up to North Wales twice, and both times they’ve recorded notable results.

Their first visit, in February 2009, saw Liverpool loanee Ryan Flynn give Dean Saunders’ side a sixth minute lead, and as we’d put four goals past City when the sides clashed at the Raymond McEnhill Stadium earlier in the season, it looked like we were setting ourselves up for another convincing win.

However, City grabbed an equaliser and despite a lot of late pressure we were unable to grab a winner. It was an incident in the 59th minute that proved to be the most significant moment of the match though. Marc Williams, rejuvenated under Saunders and in the form of his life, went down under an innocuous challenge with the Salisbury keeper and had to go off. It turned out that his season was over and without our top scorer our push towards the play-offs ran out of steam.

The following season we fared even worse. We were 2-0 down after eighteen minutes and even though Gareth Taylor pulled a goal back with twenty minutes left, we couldn’t avoid defeat.

Our overall record against Salisbury is pretty miserable. In six clashes we’ve won just once, and that was the first time the two sides met. Since then we’ve drawn two and lost three.

Danny Reynolds has been adding a few notes to the history books over the last couple of weeks, and he has an opportunity to add something rather more substantial if his chance to establish himself in the first team continues. When he made his debut at Braintree he became the sixth youngest player in our one hundred and fifty year history, and when he came on against Hereford last Tuesday he became the third youngest player to appear for Wrexham at The Racecourse.

However, he could stake a claim at the top of one of the lists in the club record book. He’s still sixteen and our youngest ever scorer is Craig Morgan, who headed a dramatic injury time header at Cambridge back in 2002to earn a 2-2draw. The young centre back was seventeen at the time, so Reynolds has another seven months to hit the net and claim top spot. If only that header at Braintree which hit the bar had gone in then he’d have claimed the record by a considerable margin!

One of his team mates has already missed out on a chance to claim the accolade. When Rob Evans made his debut he was a good seventy days younger than Reynolds was when he made his bow. However, he’s still waiting to hit the net for us, so will have to be satisfied with the consolation of being our second youngest ever player.

Danny Livesey has added a dash of experience to Wrexham’s back four and he will make his three hundred and seventy fifth career appearance tomorrow.

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