Written by: Tom Crofts (Media Team)
New Wrexham Manager Sam Ricketts feels Wrexham AFC is “the perfect fit” as he gave an impassioned and in depth insight into his background and into what he can bring to the club at the ‘Meet the Manager’ event in the Centenary Club.
The new man at the helm was flooded with adoring fans waiting to get a picture or just to wish him good luck upon entering the Cent.
Once sat down, Sam Ricketts was interviewed by Wrexham Supporters Trust Chairman, Pete Jones, as Sam recalled his playing career which spanned from the National League all the way to the Premier League with Sam also being a seasoned Welsh international earning 52 caps for the senior side.
“I was probably naïve at the time to cancel my contract at Oxford to play football at a lower league but what I did is what I say to players now,
“Don’t grip onto League football with dear life if you aren’t going to play, drop down into the lower leagues and play 30,40,50 games and your career will take off.
“I was just riding a wave… I went one minute from playing against Leigh RMI in front of 50/60 people to in a year making my international debut in the Millennium Stadium on a Tuesday Night”
Sam spoke in depth about how he got into coaching and how he studied from the best minds in the game to hone his skills and develop himself in a better coach.
Being made club captain on his first day at Wolverhampton Wanderers, Kenny Jackett started to involve Sam more into the coaching and tactics side of the game.
However once Sam left Coventry at the end of his playing career he began the journey of being a coach.
“I went up to Celtic for a week with Brendan Rogers to talk to him and grill him for around 7/8 hours about how everything worked and everything behind the scenes.”
“I went up to Stoke, Leeds, saw Tony Mowbray at Blackburn, Garry Monk and [Roberto] Martinez just to tap into the clubs and pick up ideas”
Sam went into detail about what he did with Wolves and how he worked with the manager there. Sam spoke about how the role came about at Wrexham and what made his mind up about taking the role at My Racecourse.
“My research was done before I came here. In recent times the foundations have been placed here and the club is financial stable.
“No one wants success as much as I do, if I’m pushing myself then that means I’m taking Wrexham with me”
After speaking with Pete about how he wants to play football and to play exciting football, Sam fielded questions from the fans in the crowd who were eager and keen to hear what the new manager had planned for Wrexham going forward.
ON THE RETAINED LIST:
“I want to make it fair for all. However, I need to do what’s best for Wrexham Football Club, I need to know what else is out there and what the comparison is. I don’t want to release a player and have no idea who to bring in.”
PREVIOUS CONTACTS IN THE GAME:
“I have an awful lot of contacts in the game, obviously Kenny Jackett is at Portsmouth, Tony Mowbray is at Blackburn. I want to tap into as many resources as I can and get as good a quality player that I can.”
“They are not in our league, I know that!”
Just before rapping up the new manager made a passionate plea to the fans to back him and to back the team even when things may not be going our way: “I want to thank you for making me feel so welcome.
"There will be times this year where we will need you more than ever, I can guarantee you that.
"We may be one or two goals down and that’s when we need you more than anything and that’s where a club like ours can turn things around”