Hollywood actors Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds have pledged to turn Welsh side Wrexham, who play in the fifth tier of English football, into a global powerhouse after announcing a bid to purchase the club.
McElhenney, best known for creating and starring in the the hit comedy series “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” and Reynolds, who drew acclaim for his performances in the Marvel franchise “Deadpool,” moved closer to confirming reports that they were to invest in the lower league club after speaking to members of Wrexham’s supporters’ trust on Sunday.
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Among the plans outlined by the American duo was to heavily invest in the club with the aim of making it a global brand, appoint a new CEO who has experience at the helm of a bigger club, introduce a new women’s team and produce a Netflix-style documentary which details the efforts being made to galvanize the team which was originally founded in 1884.
Both McElhenney and Reynolds are believed to want to invest their own funds into the club and take advantage of marketing opportunities available to them with the intention of inciting a surge up the English football pyramid.
Previously, Wrexham’s most successful spell occurred in the late 1970s when, in the 1977-78 season, they reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup and finished top of the Third Division (now League One).
In his introductory meeting with the Welsh club’s supporters’ trust, Reynolds outlined his vision for the club – and said that he couldn’t wait to make it over to have a pint with fans.
“We want to be at the Racecourse Ground as much as possible – as many games as I can make,” he said.
“We want to have a pint with the fans. You’ll be fed up of us! We want to be great ambassadors for the club, to introduce the club to the world and be a global force.“
However, some football fans are unsure of the potential move and have questioned the motivations behind the two Hollywood stars becoming involved in such an ambitious venture.
EXTRAORDINARY BALLOT | Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds Mission Statement.
We've been asked to share this mission statement, which can be found here 👉 https://t.co/YPDRtZ62qJ
— Wrexham AFC (@Wrexham_AFC) November 8, 2020
I remember my first impulsive football club purchase
— Daniel Fells (@DanielFells26) November 9, 2020
Ryan Reynolds saying "Wrexham" is the only thing you need to hear this week. pic.twitter.com/8R12vs41JN
— Fearless In Devotion (@fearlessidzine) November 8, 2020
McElhenney also displayed a resolute knowledge of the club’s history, referencing the teams’ late 70’s glory days in his comments.
“The Racecourse hasn’t been full for a while,” he added.
“I have a vision of the Racecourse being full again. I’ve seen how packed it used to be in ’77 – I’ve been watching a lot of films about that and I want it to feel like that again. We want to pack that stadium again.
“Ryan is much more responsible in his business life, but I get so excited by possibilities and what it could be. I want people to be so excited to watch the rise of the club and the Racecourse.”
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The next stage of the bid will come when the fan-owned club will vote on the terms of the takeover deal, with a 75 percent margin required from the supporters’ trust. The same body had previously voted overwhelmingly (95 percent) to hold talks with the actors.
“That’s happened,” McElhenney continued, referencing the documentary he intends to produce about the club.
“We’re documenting it. We should be thinking about Wrexham the way Manchester United thinks about Manchester United. Engage in the club and community.”